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Electric Wizard
05-24-2012, 09:45 PM
I recently just graduated from high school and I've been a practicing occultist for about 4 years. I've decided I might switch focuses and look into the practice of alchemy. Does anybody know the beginner sources for alchemy?

For those ceremonial magicians out there, what sort of workings and observances would I expect myself to take from an alchemical perspective?

solomon levi
05-25-2012, 03:33 AM
Here's a couple books/authors I've seen discussed favorably here at the forums:

https://encrypted-tbn1.google.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRL10KpN7EZX9He08nkG3M4KpoNx8zbt q-xFb__VAJt2u_wTf47

https://encrypted-tbn3.google.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ8fpDNCvtgzCLgiSBVicKYGe6DwbqC2 TIH1L5sFVpHOPqHSMgHxA

https://encrypted-tbn3.google.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRcq5otVuYh7LUtZp1e6IVNVpwSSY4wS DJ91RZVqAkTX0XtxcV4

Electric Wizard
05-25-2012, 08:49 PM
I attempted a meditation of calcination with the Dragon's blood/cinnibar roasting and visualized myself collecting the mercury droplets from it into a flask. I focused hard on a few feelings of anger, but alas my meditation expertise is minimal.

Krisztian
05-26-2012, 01:04 AM
Czechoslovakian Franz Bardon is worth reading, especially if one invests the time to actually, regularly, engage in the practices described. I knew someone in Toronto, Canada who followed the group that closely guards some of the left behind manuscripts of Bardon, appearently a so-called 'Fourth Book'. This particular yet to be published in English, contains methods of making some rare elixirs.

Dr. Lomer's book I also have.

I suggest to you Electric Wizard, Stavish's The Path of Alchemy, which in my experience is one of the best introductions to alchemy.

Krisztian
05-26-2012, 01:07 AM
Alchemy in general, is a long, at times arduous path, that remains with oneself, probably until the last step of this incarnation, and others to come. It would be my best recommendation that you develop a better relationship with yourself, that part of yourself that could be called Inner Master. With this method, your path will widen, and you can go to 'places' that books, workshops, lectures, etc. would never able to guide.

Other than that, Bob Monroe's Gateway Experience can also facilitate a finer consciousness that would help you with your interest in magic, occult, or any other psychic development.

Andro
05-26-2012, 01:49 AM
It would be my best recommendation that you develop a better relationship with yourself, that part of yourself that could be called Inner Master.
With this method, your path will widen, and you can go to 'places' that books, workshops, lectures, etc. would never able to guide.

In support of the above, my current way of work is not described in ANY book, nor have I heard of it from someone else.


Other than that, Bob Monroe's Gateway Experience can also facilitate a finer consciousness that would help you with your interest in magic, occult, or any other psychic development.

I took the in-house Gateway Voyage course at The Monroe Institute some years ago, and it's an experience I highly recommend.

solomon levi
05-26-2012, 09:44 AM
I attempted a meditation of calcination with the Dragon's blood/cinnibar roasting and visualized myself collecting the mercury droplets from it into a flask. I focused hard on a few feelings of anger, but alas my meditation expertise is minimal.

I had some wonderful results meditating on practical lab works.
It's great that you know to do that.

Books are great in that we see what others are practicing and what works for them,
like this forum. Of course communicating with your Muse is ideal.
This is my way as well, but I read a lot of books before that happened.

Acquiring knowledge gives our Subconscious more ways to communicate to us.

Electric Wizard
05-26-2012, 01:54 PM
I had some wonderful results meditating on practical lab works.
It's great that you know to do that.

Books are great in that we see what others are practicing and what works for them,
like this forum. Of course communicating with your Muse is ideal.
This is my way as well, but I read a lot of books before that happened.

Acquiring knowledge gives our Subconscious more ways to communicate to us.
I persisted with the meditation and in the midst of the third try, everything went quiet, and I felt as if I had been given a choice to choose a desired approach to life. (my ritual circle has the 4 elemental triangles, which were the options presented for me to work on). I chose the earth element as my initiation into change, which is based on my desire to become a botanist once I get into college. My normal element would be fire.
I don't know if this is typical of an alchemical working, but at the time it seemed convincing.

Edit: What does the image of me dropping a grey ball of metal into a vial mercury stand for?

solomon levi
05-26-2012, 03:58 PM
The first thing that comes to my mind is the color grey is associated with antimony
or arsenic. In the work with martial regulus of antimony, antimony has been
called the grey wolf. When this is made sufficiently pure and joined with iron and
copper and silver, it supposedly can be joined with mercury to make animated
mercury which will act on gold.
The thing is, in actuality, this antimony, after these processes, would not be grey
anymore when it is joined to mercury. It would be bright as a mirror.
Perhaps it was arsenic.
Anyway, if it were my "dream", I'd say it stands for the rebus, the animated mercury,
union of male and female into androgyne... something like that.
Antimony is represented by, or corresponds to, the earth. They both share this symbol
and the position of Malkuth on the tree of life:

https://encrypted-tbn0.google.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSKkEu25eawhBRUq8KIayjnFtKP7buP2 ILwXjvQQPNjMHHSEhFg

Electric Wizard
05-26-2012, 06:25 PM
I'll continue with the cinnibar meditation, since it seems to be bringing results, and each success after has been greater.
I'll also do more reading into the other process (which I'm wondering about) to meditate upon.
In alchemy, does one assume they're at the beginning of the emerald formula, or is there a way to figure out which step your in so you perform the corresponding procedure to get past that point in development?
Adding more progress:
I did another cinnibar meditation. Just when the moment of doubt lingered at the final moment, it collapsed into a contradiction of insight.
My mind flashed to how I had been drawing 'spikey mountains' in pencil, and in a way they took on a fiery appearance. Interestingly enough, I'm no artist and it was just exam week, but something profoundly resonant with me seems to manifest itself in the drawings.
I drew a tarot card to see if this impulse was a true message, and got the hierophant. simply put thats valid to me.
The impulse is telling me to work on drawing them, as if some message will be clear after that? Some hidden wisdom?

solomon levi
05-27-2012, 09:36 PM
I haven't connected meditatively with the Emerald Tablet,
except to observe the "operation of the sun" interacting with
the atmosphere of the earth - fire into air into water into earth...

Electric Wizard
05-27-2012, 10:06 PM
I've looked at the emerald tablet and I'm confused by it still. I'd like to perform other alchemical operations as symbolic hermetic magic somehow.. But thats for short term low magick, not high magick.
I'd like to focus on the higher goals of alchemy though. I've been reading the complete idiots guide to necromancy, the Emerald Tablet (Dennis William Hauck) and Julius Evola (the hermetic tradition). And so far it all looks daunting.
I would like to do the physical alchemy operations but it sounds dangerous and expensive. I dunno if herbal alchemy is much less so?

Illen A. Cluf
05-27-2012, 10:39 PM
I would like to do the physical alchemy operations but it sounds dangerous and expensive. I dunno if herbal alchemy is much less so?

Remember that just about ALL the "alchemical" operations you read about in forums, books, and websites are merely 'chemical' operations (as opposed to 'alchemical' operations) that lead nowhere. You can spend a fortune doing such experiments over decades and still not be much further ahead. I find that most of those who have mastered these chemical operations consider themselves as true 'alchemists' and like to write books or become the star at the various "alchemical" conferences/seminars. Yet they are clearly only "puffers".

Illen

solomon levi
05-27-2012, 11:00 PM
The Evola book is my favorite. :)
For practical (which is also very spiritual), I strongly suggest reading the Golden Chain of Homer:
http://www.sacred-texts.com/alc/catena1.htm

What really boosted me was realising what alchemy is trying to create.
The alchemists' heaven is a union of opposites, a marriage of fixed and
volatile, which you can accomplish just as well in the plant work with wine
or any plant - they all yield fixed salt/potassium carbonate and volatile
spirit/alcohol and a sulphurous soul/essential oil.
Meditatively, this is union of fire and water into the hexagram of heaven, shamayin -
perfect balance; six, a perfect number; the rough stone/ashlar into a perfect cube of six sides;
kabbalistically, six, the sephira of tiphareth/sun...

But you bring up a good point... maybe one can't start there - where is it in the process?
The colors are helpful here. For me there was a long black phase of deconstructing
myself, my beliefs, shedding knowledge/the past... meditating on black saturn/death/time
and putrefaction of self. This is the start of alchemy. There is no alchemy without death.
I couldn't see what alchemy was about as long as I was trying to solve the puzzle of the first
matter - focussing on things instead of qualities.

Hope this is helpful. :)

Electric Wizard
05-27-2012, 11:31 PM
Here I thought calcination was the start :O
I'll pick up the golden chain too.

solomon levi
06-01-2012, 07:19 PM
There is a meditation using the processes, starting with calcination.
I guess you're aware of that. Here's a link:
http://www.esotericonline.net/group/alchemy/forum/topics/the-seven-spiritual-and-1?xg_source=activity

I was just thinking too, a simple/basic but very good meditation is done on the four elements
and the three principles. In particular the contemplation of mercury was/is very profound for me:
Mercury is the 8th sephira, 8 is the number of the gnostic christos and hermes, the number/symbol
of infinity, mercury, the first matter, unconditioned, undetermined... all these qualities and archetypes
are great to meditate on. But again, don't ignore the others - it depends where you're at I guess.
One thing I would advise is that it's easy to get lost in the volatility of the 8, so remember it's a
double square as well. There are dangers for some becoming too volatile/crazy without preparation
and the stability of 4.

Perhaps more people can respond to this thread. I'd like for you to have more options than my views,
but I am very fond of this subject.

MarkostheGnostic
06-02-2012, 05:26 AM
What really boosted me was realising what alchemy is trying to create.
The alchemists' heaven is a union of opposites, a marriage of fixed and
volatile, which you can accomplish just as well in the plant work with wine
or any plant - they all yield fixed salt/potassium carbonate and volatile
spirit/alcohol and a sulphurous soul/essential oil.
Meditatively, this is union of fire and water into the hexagram of heaven, shamayin -
perfect balance; six, a perfect number; the rough stone/ashlar into a perfect cube of six sides;
kabbalistically, six, the sephira of tiphareth/sun...

For me there was a long black phase of deconstructing
myself, my beliefs, shedding knowledge/the past... meditating on black saturn/death/time
and putrefaction of self. This is the start of alchemy. There is no alchemy without death.
I couldn't see what alchemy was about as long as I was trying to solve the puzzle of the first
matter - focussing on things instead of qualities.


AS IF...I wrote this from my own mind. *Thumbs Up* ;)

http://i47.tinypic.com/25k61bm.jpg

Krisztian
06-02-2012, 03:29 PM
There is no alchemy without death.

I can relate to that experience, no alchemy without death. In this vacuum of life, where one energy decomposes, another emerges; I have seen my life completely change, yet another adventure resurface. I still cannot believe at times where I currently live now, referring to the geographical location. Especially when taken to mind where I was physically born. Like my former life vanished, died in a way.

Krisztian
06-02-2012, 03:36 PM
Remember that just about ALL the "alchemical" operations you read about in forums, books, and websites are merely 'chemical' operations (as opposed to 'alchemical' operations) that lead nowhere. You can spend a fortune doing such experiments over decades and still not be much further ahead. I find that most of those who have mastered these chemical operations consider themselves as true 'alchemists' and like to write books or become the star at the various "alchemical" conferences/seminars. Yet they are clearly only "puffers".

Illen

I was attempting to articulate in one of my posts what you eloquently state here.

3+O(
06-07-2013, 05:09 PM
The earliest modern authors to explicitly interpret the alchemical literature in a spiritual sense are Ethan Allen Hitchcock (very easy to read) and Mary Anne Atwood (pretty difficult.)

http://ignisetazoth.blogspot.com/2008/02/american-alchemists-ethan-allen.html

Hermetic Philosophy & Alchemy: A Suggestive Inquiry into the Hermetic Mystery (http://www.rexresearch.com/atwood/cont.htm)

3+O(
06-07-2013, 05:16 PM
The earliest modern authors to explicitly interpret the alchemical literature in a spiritual sense are Ethan Allen Hitchcock (very easy to read) and Mary Anne Atwood (pretty difficult.) Jung indirectly got into alchemy because of Hitchcock, via Herbert Silberer.

Several Ethan Allen Hitchcock texts online:
http://ignisetazoth.blogspot.com/2008/02/american-alchemists-ethan-allen.html

Mary Anne Atwood:
Hermetic Philosophy & Alchemy: A Suggestive Inquiry into the Hermetic Mystery (http://www.rexresearch.com/atwood/cont.htm)

Titus Burckhardt's 'Alchemy: Science of the Cosmos, Science of the Soul' is another easy read. I have some quibbles with him, but it's definitely worthwhile.

Also the Evola book mentioned above is excellent and the most comprehensive of these (excepting 'A Suggestive Inquiry', but Evola is a lot more modern in style. Read him carefully, though.)