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JDP
03-03-2014, 03:53 PM
This book was my constant companion from the 6th grade. I learned of alchemists and philosophers in the opening pages, and performed every experiment at least once. It was my difficulties with numbers and the old fashioned slide rule that prevented me from changing from biology to chemistry as an undergraduate. Of course, it was because of imbibing certain chemicals that my intention to become a physician was replaced by my becoming a philosophy major in college instead.

http://i1194.photobucket.com/albums/aa379/MarkosthGnostic/51X4VCOOaxL_SX258_BO1204203200_.jpg (http://s1194.photobucket.com/user/MarkosthGnostic/media/51X4VCOOaxL_SX258_BO1204203200_.jpg.html)

A scan of that book can be found here:

http://chemistry.about.com/library/goldenchem.pdf

The author expresses (page 7) the typical opinion of chemists regarding alchemy & transmutation: stating that no one has succeeded in making even a speck of gold by making any substances react with one another. A rather bold assertion based no doubt on theoretical conjectures and assumptions, considering the huge number of substances and their possible combinations/interactions under a number of different conditions, which not even modern chemistry has been able to empirically test all of them.

theFool
03-03-2014, 06:12 PM
A scan of that book can be found here:

http://chemistry.about.com/library/goldenchem.pdf

It seems that the link is not ok. I found the book here: http://www.arvindguptatoys.com/arvindgupta/goldenchem.pdf

JDP
03-03-2014, 07:59 PM
It seems that the link is not ok.

It was working earlier when I posted it. Don't know why it changed to another page.

MarkostheGnostic
03-03-2014, 10:56 PM
Thanks for posting that link! I saved it, even though I still have my original copy. But, what's your point? Paracelsus was mentioned favorably, and for me, this book was the food that fed my sense of awe and wonder and gave meaning to the values of knowledge, experimentation, of creating and observing phenomena on a level that was far more rewarding than the ball games and social games that most children play. As it turns out, people who are INTPs according to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator have chemistry as the first, most prevalent occupation.

Producing Gold from base metals is only one aspect of alchemy, and as I see it, it is part of the religious mythology of alchemy. It is scarcely different than turning water into wine, withering a fig tree that refuses to bear fruit out of season, or walking on water for that matter. IF any of these preternatural events physically occur, they do so only in connection with a human consciousness that has been transmuted in a way that is incomprehensible. 'Miracles' besides Synchronicity (the miracles of everyday life) are symbolic for the transcendence of physical law, of space-time, cause-effect.

JDP
03-04-2014, 03:22 AM
Thanks for posting that link! I saved it, even though I still have my original copy. But, what's your point? Paracelsus was mentioned favorably, and for me, this book was the food that fed my sense of awe and wonder and gave meaning to the values of knowledge, experimentation, of creating and observing phenomena on a level that was far more rewarding than the ball games and social games that most children play. As it turns out, people who are INTPs according to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator have chemistry as the first, most prevalent occupation.

Producing Gold from base metals is only one aspect of alchemy, and as I see it, it is part of the religious mythology of alchemy. It is scarcely different than turning water into wine, withering a fig tree that refuses to bear fruit out of season, or walking on water for that matter. IF any of these preternatural events physically occur, they do so only in connection with a human consciousness that has been transmuted in a way that is incomprehensible. 'Miracles' besides Synchronicity (the miracles of everyday life) are symbolic for the transcendence of physical law, of space-time, cause-effect.

I never understood how could anyone believe this claim that the transmutation of metals is only "one aspect of alchemy", as if it was only something incidental to the subject. Is there any other aspect to alchemy (besides the medicinal one, I mean)? One thing are the religious and/or philosophical views of any particular alchemist, a subjective topic, and another very different one is what they were doing and achieving in their labs, which is not subjective. An empirical fact does not depend on someone's beliefs. People who do not believe in gravity (yes, there are some out there) still get killed when they fall down a precipice, no matter how much they deny that such a thing exists. Gravity does not care if you believe in it or not. It just "is". The literature of alchemy is heavily concerned with the transmutation of metals, nothing much else (except medicinal/longevity claims, which is another common topic of the literature.) If transmutation is real, then it is possible to be achieved by you, me, a Dominican monk, a Protestant pastor, a Buddhist, a Taoist, a pagan, an atheist, etc. regardless of whatever our respective beliefs are. Unless you can prove that there is some intelligent and all-powerful entity out there in nature arbitrarily barring people who hold certain beliefs from achieving it. In which case you would have solved an even bigger mystery that has been preoccupying the mind of man even more than whether or not gold and silver can be made from other metals.

MarkostheGnostic
03-04-2014, 05:32 AM
Twice, you made exceptions to the notion of medicine (i.e., Paracelsus, the Taoists and Chinese alchemy, and Indian Rasayana). Non-dualistically speaking, the division of subjectivity and objectivity is illusory, and even from a dualistic perspective, the differentiation is permeable at best. Psi-functions have illustrated this to me for decades. As to empiricism, the idea of some theoretically pure objectivity, is strictly 19th century thinking. Consciousness and space-time, as Jung and Pauli never got to systematize, are two sides of the same coin. This principle is central to transformation as it applies to alchemy. The intentionality of the Operator is intrinsic to the form that transmutations take, whether it is the 'matrix' of spagyrics that embody the planetary spirits or metallic transmutations. In the former, the inner planets of the chakras motivations (microcosm) and the outer planetary bodies are in correspondence (the sympathetic magickal aspect plus the astrological).

Physics is capable of producing atomic transformations in a particle accelerator. Laboratory alchemy's claim to atomic transformations are on a par with cold-fusion as a possibility. I see a conflation of spiritual symbols and physical reality - the same problem that has devalued religion in post-modern times. The ancients conflated physical phenomena with metaphysical explanations in their myths and alchemy is yet another religion which often does the same thing. The biblical language of Resurrection, for example, is a spiritual verity, but not a physical resuscitation (at least for Paul of Tarsus). Resurrection is not a historical, empirical, scientifically verifiable phenomenon but an inner movement of spiritual experience wherein one's egoic (or physical) death allows for a Realization of one's Eternal Nature. The alchemical myth s an alternative aspiration of personal immortality and unbridled wealth, both issuing from the Philosopher's Stone. The exaltation from such an attainment is probably metaphorical for the Realization of Resurrection in earthly and comprehensible emotions.

I do laboratory work, but a 'puffer' is not what I am. Silver and Gold plus indeterminate life-span yields in the imagination a total loss of 'death anxiety,' an unsurpassed enthusiasm, but also a dark and vampyric greed for existence. I seek cessation of my thirst for existence in form, and an acceptance of Eternal Life as quite distinct from a life described in terms of wealth and immortality. I seek the Transcendental in alchemy, as in all things. While in existence, I also seek quality of this life, and that translates into health and well being. I have retired from striving for the motivations of the lower chakras beyond the maintenance of my established life-style.

JDP
03-04-2014, 03:53 PM
Twice, you made exceptions to the notion of medicine (i.e., Paracelsus, the Taoists and Chinese alchemy, and Indian Rasayana). Non-dualistically speaking, the division of subjectivity and objectivity is illusory, and even from a dualistic perspective, the differentiation is permeable at best. Psi-functions have illustrated this to me for decades. As to empiricism, the idea of some theoretically pure objectivity, is strictly 19th century thinking. Consciousness and space-time, as Jung and Pauli never got to systematize, are two sides of the same coin. This principle is central to transformation as it applies to alchemy. The intentionality of the Operator is intrinsic to the form that transmutations take, whether it is the 'matrix' of spagyrics that embody the planetary spirits or metallic transmutations. In the former, the inner planets of the chakras motivations (microcosm) and the outer planetary bodies are in correspondence (the sympathetic magickal aspect plus the astrological).

Physics is capable of producing atomic transformations in a particle accelerator. Laboratory alchemy's claim to atomic transformations are on a par with cold-fusion as a possibility. I see a conflation of spiritual symbols and physical reality - the same problem that has devalued religion in post-modern times. The ancients conflated physical phenomena with metaphysical explanations in their myths and alchemy is yet another religion which often does the same thing. The biblical language of Resurrection, for example, is a spiritual verity, but not a physical resuscitation (at least for Paul of Tarsus). Resurrection is not a historical, empirical, scientifically verifiable phenomenon but an inner movement of spiritual experience wherein one's egoic (or physical) death allows for a Realization of one's Eternal Nature. The alchemical myth s an alternative aspiration of personal immortality and unbridled wealth, both issuing from the Philosopher's Stone. The exaltation from such an attainment is probably metaphorical for the Realization of Resurrection in earthly and comprehensible emotions.

I do laboratory work, but a 'puffer' is not what I am. Silver and Gold plus indeterminate life-span yields in the imagination a total loss of 'death anxiety,' an unsurpassed enthusiasm, but also a dark and vampyric greed for existence. I seek cessation of my thirst for existence in form, and an acceptance of Eternal Life as quite distinct from a life described in terms of wealth and immortality. I seek the Transcendental in alchemy, as in all things. While in existence, I also seek quality of this life, and that translates into health and well being. I have retired from striving for the motivations of the lower chakras beyond the maintenance of my established life-style.

The problem is that alchemy does not present itself as a "myth", but as a fact. When alchemists speak of transmutations and wonderful cures or feats of longevity by means of their "Philosophers' Stone" or "Elixir", they are describing these things as empirical facts that not only are possible in theory but that many of them have in fact achieved, and they are just kindly enough passing the achievability of these facts onto others. Many of them, however, interpose their religious beliefs into these claims and conjure up a "divine intervention" that supposedly will keep "unworthy" people from achieving the same things they have achieved. But you can tell that the alchemists who made such a claim did not really believe what they were saying. If they really did, they would have had no problem at all writing the whole procedure for the Stone/Elixir in plain clear words that anyone can easily understand and follow, and let this "divine will" keep on selecting who succeeds and who doesn't. But instead we can clearly see them doing the total opposite: using obscure allegories, "decknamen", contradictions, riddles, paradoxes, etc., basically a whole bunch of literary tactics to make it "not so easy" to find out how to replicate what hey claim to have achieved, which, again, would be totally unnecessary if they really believed there was this "divine will" going around arbitrarily selecting who succeeds and who doesn't. So this brings me back to my original point: empirical facts are one thing, speculations/theories/conjectures/beliefs are another thing. Facts work independently of what one believes to be true or not. If the Stone/Elixir really exists, it should be achievable by anyone, independent of what he/she believes. Empirical facts are not subjective, they just "are". They exist whether you believe in them or not. They are just as real for a Franciscan monk in a medieval monastery as for a Sun-worshiper in an ancient temple. What they believe respectively is inconsequential to the empirical fact.

MarkostheGnostic
03-05-2014, 04:43 AM
Facts work independently of what one believes to be true or not. If the Stone/Elixir really exists, it should be achievable by anyone, independent of what he/she believes. Empirical facts are not subjective, they just "are". They exist whether you believe in them or not.

This is true of chemistry, NOT alchemy. Alchemy, just as the descriptions of the New Testament, as myth in general, are presented as historical events in space-time. The historical events, be they of 1st century Judeans or medieval alchemists, have their transformative power in symbols, which according to Jung (and I concur) are living psychic realities.

You are speaking from a position of empiricism, and scientific materialism, which certainly has its practical place in the utilitarian world of replication of physical and chemical changes at STP, etc. But you are conflating chemistry with alchemy, in which the astrological and sympathetic magickal aspects are integral, not to mention the 'inner planets' of sympathies between chakra motives and 'planetary spirits,' or the Qabalistic parallel with corresponding sephira. This is the entire difference between alchemy and its earthy offspring chemistry. Alchemy is not merely a primitive and undeveloped chemistry, it is a premise about the permeability of matter and spirit, or more contemporarily speaking, space-time and psyche. I will not even venture into a quantum analogy of wave collapse and particle paradox with regard to the presence of an observer of quantum experiments (partly because of my limited understanding and partly because it is a digression), but consciousness is an integral part of alchemy. Read The Philosopher's Stone by Israel Regardie, and get his take on why he could not get certain mineral glasses to manifest for him. He eventually conceded, begrudgingly, that despite careful laboratory procedure, HE was to blame.

Sometimes, pure chemistry can lead to alchemy - the obverse of the historical trend. If you become familiar with the story of Dr. Albert Hofmann after he discovered and experimented with LSD-25, he was transformed. His Christian identity was transformed. In fact, I have correspondences with the man from the 1980s.
http://i1194.photobucket.com/albums/aa379/MarkosthGnostic/DrHofmannonLSDEnebriation.jpg (http://s1194.photobucket.com/user/MarkosthGnostic/media/DrHofmannonLSDEnebriation.jpg.html)

Seth-Ra
03-05-2014, 11:48 AM
The problem is that alchemy does not present itself as a "myth", but as a fact. When alchemists speak of transmutations and wonderful cures or feats of longevity by means of their "Philosophers' Stone" or "Elixir", they are describing these things as empirical facts that not only are possible in theory but that many of them have in fact achieved, and they are just kindly enough passing the achievability of these facts onto others.

Cause they are facts, as well as myths. They are literal, as well as symbolic. The language is on multiple levels, thus is subjective to your understanding-level.


Many of them, however, interpose their religious beliefs into these claims and conjure up a "divine intervention" that supposedly will keep "unworthy" people from achieving the same things they have achieved.

No, the "unworthy" keep themselves from achieving the same things, by remaining unworthy. The only person who is ever in your way, is yourself.

Spiritual Truths are often robed/wrapped in the religious covering of the area, and while their may be some "conjuring" involved (i prefer to say communion ;) ) it isnt in the sense of it being fake/non-existent.


But you can tell that the alchemists who made such a claim did not really believe what they were saying. If they really did, they would have had no problem at all writing the whole procedure for the Stone/Elixir in plain clear words that anyone can easily understand and follow, and let this "divine will" keep on selecting who succeeds and who doesn't. But instead we can clearly see them doing the total opposite: using obscure allegories, "decknamen", contradictions, riddles, paradoxes, etc., basically a whole bunch of literary tactics to make it "not so easy" to find out how to replicate what hey claim to have achieved, which, again, would be totally unnecessary if they really believed there was this "divine will" going around arbitrarily selecting who succeeds and who doesn't.

Actually, we try to tell people, try to show them. The thing youre not understanding is that the language we are using is on multiple levels of being. Following the levels, the jumps, the spiraling thought, is initiatory and prepares for the manifesting of the achievements. You cannot manifest that which you are not, and you cannot become that which you desire to be if youre not willing to walk the Pattern.


So this brings me back to my original point: empirical facts are one thing, speculations/theories/conjectures/beliefs are another thing.

Actually, they are all facts - depending on the context/level of thought per each one. They say crystal-ball, we say iPhone. Same idea (speculations/theories/conjectures/beliefs), different manifestation/fact - equally valuable. Just because i know how to use a crystal-ball as well as an iPhone, and my dad doesnt, doesnt invalidate either of them, and just because he only believes in the phone, doesnt invalidate the crystal-ball. Different levels.


Facts work independently of what one believes to be true or not. If the Stone/Elixir really exists, it should be achievable by anyone, independent of what he/she believes.

It is achievable by anyone - when they do what is required. Everyone has the potential, but they limit themselves, due to their belief/non-belief.

For the sake of this context: The non-believer can witness a transmutation, but the believer is the one that performed it.

Understand, ofcourse, im not talking about belief, which is stagnant dogmatic BS - im talking about True, experienced, realized Spiritual relationship being manifested. If you cannot see or hear, then how can you read or interpret correctly?


Empirical facts are not subjective, they just "are". They exist whether you believe in them or not. They are just as real for a Franciscan monk in a medieval monastery as for a Sun-worshiper in an ancient temple. What they believe respectively is inconsequential to the empirical fact.

Fact is, Spirit Is. Proof is in the consciousness and Order of all systems, living things, and creation itself. Two dimensional "scientists" that cannot tap into whats behind the veil, do not have the facts, only their beliefs about them.

Alchemy, on any level (physical, mental, spiritual) is the Art of Life: of Transmutation/Transition/Transcendence Change/Ascension.


__________________


Markos,

Well said. :)

Alchemy is the Root and Fruit of all Arts and Sciences. :cool:





~Seth-Ra

JDP
03-05-2014, 02:18 PM
Facts work independently of what one believes to be true or not. If the Stone/Elixir really exists, it should be achievable by anyone, independent of what he/she believes. Empirical facts are not subjective, they just "are". They exist whether you believe in them or not.

This is true of chemistry, NOT alchemy. Alchemy, just as the descriptions of the New Testament, as myth in general, are presented as historical events in space-time. The historical events, be they of 1st century Judeans or medieval alchemists, have their transformative power in symbols, which according to Jung (and I concur) are living psychic realities.

You are speaking from a position of empiricism, and scientific materialism, which certainly has its practical place in the utilitarian world of replication of physical and chemical changes at STP, etc. But you are conflating chemistry with alchemy, in which the astrological and sympathetic magickal aspects are integral, not to mention the 'inner planets' of sympathies between chakra motives and 'planetary spirits,' or the Qabalistic parallel with corresponding sephira. This is the entire difference between alchemy and its earthy offspring chemistry. Alchemy is not merely a primitive and undeveloped chemistry, it is a premise about the permeability of matter and spirit, or more contemporarily speaking, space-time and psyche. I will not even venture into a quantum analogy of wave collapse and particle paradox with regard to the presence of an observer of quantum experiments (partly because of my limited understanding and partly because it is a digression), but consciousness is an integral part of alchemy. Read The Philosopher's Stone by Israel Regardie, and get his take on why he could not get certain mineral glasses to manifest for him. He eventually conceded, begrudgingly, that despite careful laboratory procedure, HE was to blame.

Sometimes, pure chemistry can lead to alchemy - the obverse of the historical trend. If you become familiar with the story of Dr. Albert Hofmann after he discovered and experimented with LSD-25, he was transformed. His Christian identity was transformed. In fact, I have correspondences with the man from the 1980s.
http://i1194.photobucket.com/albums/aa379/MarkosthGnostic/DrHofmannonLSDEnebriation.jpg (http://s1194.photobucket.com/user/MarkosthGnostic/media/DrHofmannonLSDEnebriation.jpg.html)

There is no reason why alchemy should be judged by different standards than other scientific claims, since it claims to achieve some peculiar physical phenomena. I suppose you know that the Jungian interpretation of alchemy has been widely criticized by historians of science. Jung basically took a lot of random quotes from alchemical literature out of their proper context and placed them into his own conception of the subject, which was obviously not the one of the alchemists he quotes. To them the Philosophers' Stone was a quite real, physical, tangible substance (many of them even clearly describe its color and density) and it did what they claimed. It was not any "transformation of the psyche". The fact that some of the alchemists that Jung quotes even clearly say that the alchemist who can afford it should have lab assistants who can help him conduct the operations while he is busy attending to other matters should have given him a hint that the "psyche" of the alchemist has little to do with this subject.

By the way, even occultists like A.E. Waite had to admit, after a closer inspection of the literature, that alchemy was really mostly concerned with transmutation and medicine/longevity, not much else. Whatever little evidence he found for "spiritual alchemy" claims was rather late (from about the 17th century onward.) I recommend you read his very interesting last book on the subject, "The Secret Tradition in Alchemy", if you have not read it yet. Even modern historians of science who specialize in the history of alchemy like Lawrence Principe and William R. Newman were impressed by Waite's rather "critical" review of the subject and commend him for that.

Krisztian
03-05-2014, 03:06 PM
One can't practice alchemy based on the intellect alone. It is evident in historical literature if one reads it carefully that even known alchemists like Paracelsus have admitted that they were initiated into the Art. In other words, the breakthrough was more than just the work of the intellect. The undercurrents of this Art, those practitioners who're unknown alchemists, are all initiated alchemists! That's why they almost always stay quiet and remain unknown - it is by oath!

History also provides us with a clear picture - if our intellect allows it so - that purely lab-alchemy is no thing more than the attributed name of "Puffers".

Academia has it's purpose, but it will never, I mean never, pierce the veil because the veil can only be passed by initiation alone. Thus, it is very, very unlikely that one would make the Philosopher's Stone just by playing around in the lab, whether that's at Yale or Harvard or Bob's backyard.

I don't have to be right about it, I'm just simply stating what I have seen.

JDP
03-05-2014, 03:07 PM
Cause they are facts, as well as myths. They are literal, as well as symbolic. The language is on multiple levels, thus is subjective to your understanding-level.


No, a fact, let's stick to gravity as a perfect example, is one thing which anyone can easily perceive and plainly see and experience, and a theory/speculation/conjecture/belief, say how gravity supposedly works, is another thing entirely different. One is a physical observable indisputable physical phenomenon, the other one is an attempt at rationalizing/explaining it.


No, the "unworthy" keep themselves from achieving the same things, by remaining unworthy. The only person who is ever in your way, is yourself.

It is achievable by anyone - when they do what is required. Everyone has the potential, but they limit themselves, due to their belief/non-belief.

Again, if that was true then there would not be so much need of making such a big mystery regarding how to make it. They could very easily have published the whole process in plain words and let these "unworthy" people keep on preventing themselves from achieving it, while all the "worthy" ones would succeed. Of course, the fact is that things like "unworthy" and "worthy" are totally subjective concepts. Each individual has his own concept of what constitutes "worthy" or "unworthy". What may have been "worthy" for an ancient Graeco-Egyptian alchemist might have been totally "unworthy" to an Early Modern one.


Spiritual Truths are often robed/wrapped in the religious covering of the area, and while their may be some "conjuring" involved (i prefer to say communion ;) ) it isnt in the sense of it being fake/non-existent.

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as "spiritual truths" since they can never be proven, such claims belong to the realm of speculation. If they were provable, the problem of different conflicting religions would have been solved a long time ago and no one would be fighting each other regarding whose beliefs are "true" or "false".


Actually, they are all facts - depending on the context/level of thought per each one. They say crystal-ball, we say iPhone. Same idea (speculations/theories/conjectures/beliefs), different manifestation/fact - equally valuable. Just because i know how to use a crystal-ball as well as an iPhone, and my dad doesnt, doesnt invalidate either of them, and just because he only believes in the phone, doesnt invalidate the crystal-ball. Different levels.

This analogy is not quite true, since anyone can easily see that an iPhone works and does what its inventors say it does. It is not any "speculation/theory/conjecture/belief" but an easily perceived fact that can be demonstrated anytime anyone pleases, as long as they have a working iPhone with them. A crystal-ball, on the other hand, is just a claim that has never been proven by anyone. And if someone could really prove it, they could get a cool million dollars for their trouble:

http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/1m-challenge.html

Besides of course the much bigger reward of proving once and for all that "spirits" do exist, which would make a lot of people think twice about their way of behaving towards one another.


For the sake of this context: The non-believer can witness a transmutation, but the believer is the one that performed it.

This can be easily contested from historical witness accounts of transmutation performed by people who had no idea how to make the Stone themselves, yet for different reasons samples of it fell into their hands. Some of these witnesses were in fact former detractors of alchemy/transmutation who became convinced of the reality of the subject after they performed transmutations with their own hands by means of those samples (like the Irish poet, translator and historian Richard Stanihurst, for example, who witnessed no less than 15 transmutations, at least one of them, of mercury into gold, made by means of a small sample of a red powder given to him by an acquaintance who knew an alchemist who knew how to make it. After such decisive ocular, tangible proof, needless to say Stanihurst became a most ardent defender of alchemy.)


Understand, ofcourse, im not talking about belief, which is stagnant dogmatic BS - im talking about True, experienced, realized Spiritual relationship being manifested. If you cannot see or hear, then how can you read or interpret correctly?

Again, such things as "spiritual relationship being manifested" can't be proven to anyone. They may seem like "facts" to you, but to no one else, unless you can really prove them to be so. And I don't mean by making assertions, but by actually performing something visible and measurable which can't really be explained or denied.


Fact is, Spirit Is. Proof is in the consciousness and Order of all systems, living things, and creation itself. Two dimensional "scientists" that cannot tap into whats behind the veil, do not have the facts, only their beliefs about them.

All of these are speculative concepts, not "facts". Any biologist will tell you that living things and nature are not proof of anything regarding "spirits" or any other metaphysical claims.


Alchemy, on any level (physical, mental, spiritual) is the Art of Life: of Transmutation/Transition/Transcendence Change/Ascension.

Unfortunately, the only one that lends itself to being tested is the "physical" one i.e. actual alchemy (because the "other" ones are not really "alchemy", they are actually metaphysics.)

MarkostheGnostic
03-05-2014, 03:19 PM
~Seth-Ra: Thanks, and Right On to this: "Understand, ofcourse, im not talking about belief, which is stagnant dogmatic BS - im talking about True, experienced, realized Spiritual relationship being manifested."

MarkostheGnostic
03-05-2014, 04:08 PM
Unfortunately, the only one that lends itself to being tested is the "physical" one i.e. actual alchemy (because the "other" ones are not really "alchemy", they are actually metaphysics.)

You are conflating chemistry with alchemy. Alchemy is an "occult science," a term which, from a strictly physical scientist's perspective is oxymoronic. Aside from alchemy's purely psychological reality, as C.G. Jung and his followers (Marie Louise von Franz, and Edward Edinger, most prominently), its physical 'labor' aspect, partakes as much from the machinations of ritual magick as it does from laboratory technique. For example, a classic alembic apparatus in alchemy is not merely a distillation device, it is a symbolic representation of the 'inner planets,' the psychic centers or chakras, which transmutes one form of energy into another (by physical parallel, the kinetic energy of rushing water can transfer to a turbine which in turn transmutes kinetic energy into heat and controlled kinetic energy in a turbine, which in turn is transmuted into electricity, which can produce hot incandescent or cool fluorescent light). Moreover, what occurs in the glass alembic is simultaneously occurring in the 'internal alembic' of the Operator. This inner-outer parallel is perhaps most clearly illustrated in Taoist alchemy's diagrammatic 'circulation of the light' wherein one has language like 'the lower and upper cauldron,' where the closed system is similar to a laboratory reflux apparatus (see Lu K'uan Yu's Taoist Yoga: Alchemy and Immortality).

If any of the physically impossible transmutations that are said to occur in the alchemist's laboratory do in fact occur (like the classic transmutation of Lead or Mercury into Gold), an entirely different paradigm about physical matter is being demonstrated. There is no high-energy particle accelerator creating a radioactive isotope by adding neutrons to a base metal. Where is the energy coming from that would give physical mass in sufficient quantities to be visible to the human eye let alone quantifiable at a microscopic level by spectroscopy? Furnace heat is not capable by the laws of physics. If, however, for the sake of argument, metals have 'spirits,' some essential quality that corresponds to an essence of a planetary body, and some kind of 'resonance' can be set in motion, the theory is that the matter in a flask can 'capture' that corresponding essence, but the intention (the single invariant aspect of consciousness according to Phenomenology) of the Operator is integral. The consciousness of the Operator, that is to say, the highest spiritual consciousness (Nous, Neshamah, Holy Spirit, Anima Mundi), that is God's immanence operating through the Operator), is integral to a transmutation. It is these factors which make the process preternatural as well as metaphysical, insofar as Spirit (archaic for Consciousness) in ontologically prior to matter (The Creator precedes the creation).

Alchemy is therefore an alternative religious endeavor, wherein the Operator is non-dualistically involved in the process of transmutation. Inner and outer are conjoined as ONE. As the 3rd line of The Emerald Tablet reads: "And as all things have been & arose from One by the mediation of one: so all things have their birth from this One Thing by adaptation." The One is Spirit, the One Thing is matter, just as in the Shiva-Shakti or Purusha-Prakriti apparent duality in Hindu thought.

http://i1194.photobucket.com/albums/aa379/MarkosthGnostic/Alembic96.jpg (http://s1194.photobucket.com/user/MarkosthGnostic/media/Alembic96.jpg.html)

MarkostheGnostic
03-05-2014, 06:06 PM
I'll look into Waite's book, as I've read him since 1972 (and despite Crowley's rather dismissive and derisive attitude towards Waite). I am aware of Jung's misgivings. I read Richard Noll's books The Jung Cult and Aryan Christ after I (like Noll) were rejected from our application to train in Analytical Psychology. These facts do not deter from the very credible notion that many or most alchemists were projecting unconscious psychic contents onto their laboratory procedures. The shortcoming here, is that the second movement - re-absorbing those psychic contents from their targets - is missing. This is what seems to be intended in Spagyrics. The medicines have 'occult virtues' by reason of magickal correspondences with planetary spirits, and although not everyone who prepares elixirs, end, etc. is intentionally practicing Initiatory alchemy, that does not preclude that an Initiatory process can still be made of Spagyrics. Mark Stavish wrote of this in The Path of Alchemy.

Again, this is a reason why NOT "alchemy should be judged by different standards than other scientific claims, since it claims to achieve some peculiar physical phenomena." The transmutations are not occurring by strictly physical laws. I do not know how you regard the miracles in the New Testament, such as 'turning water to wine,' but at this stage of my life, I not only question the historicity of Iesous himself, but I have been shown that many of the events that comprise the New Testament are culled directly from the earlier Pyramid and Coffin texts of the Egyptians (see D.M. Murdock's Christ in Egypt if interested).

There was a time, long ago, where such miracles were taken literally and I listened to metaphysical explanations by Paramahansa Yogananda in pseudo-yogic jargon (Autobiography of a Yogi). Then, in seminary, I simply [bracketed] said miracles in a phenomenological way, suspending judgement one way or the other. Later, I saw miracles as midrash and metaphor, rather than metaphysics. After that, I waxed Gnostic, and began to consider Reality as 'The Matrix,' of a Demiurge (not The Architect of the Wachowski trilogy, but the Creator of this universe), in which "glitches" in The Matrix could occur (miracles, spooks, paranormal phenomena, etc.). Of course, from strictly theistic perspective, God the Creator doesn't make mistakes, but then again, in Kabbalism, there was a catastrophic bursting of the vessels at the beginning of time, and the creation requires a restoration (tikkun). So, perhaps there are 'permissible' opportunities for co-creation by morally upright individuals. The Psi functions of telepathy, and precognition are things I have personally experienced on many occasions. I am convinced of the veracity of other people's clairvoyance (knowing someone has died, been injured, etc.), but telekinesis is the closest Psi function to metallic transmutation, and I have never known or read anything credible (including Uri Geller's outrageous claims, even though I have seen a bent key (parapsycholgist/Egyptologist Bob Brier) and a cracked sapphire in a ring (Jean Houston's), which seemed was a star sapphire to begin with.

As Thomas is my favorite New Testament disciple, I will remain as 'doubting' as he is said to have been about the wounds of a physically resurrected Iesous. It seems that a resuscitated corpse would also have healing properties, as the biblical Iesous was said to have had on others, but more importantly, the 'empty tomb narratives' were more public relations writings than anything approaching journalistic accuracy. Resurrection for Paul was not a physical event, a resuscitation, but a spiritual verity. More midrash! I must agree with the highest Yoga doctrines that the power of Self-Realization, of "being in Christ" or Buddhist Realization of our True Nature as Eternal, trumps any lesser powers (siddhis) which manifest as mere materiality. Neither is Eternal Life the same thing as personal immortality. Wealth and immortality seem more like the misguided myths of Chinese alchemy, when the real goal is the same in Christianity as in Taoism. The Way (Tao) is The Way (Christ), is The Way..."A rose by any other name smells as sweet."

lwowl
03-05-2014, 08:32 PM
Alchemy is not merely a primitive and undeveloped chemistry, it is a premise about the permeability of matter and spirit, or more contemporarily speaking, space-time and psyche. I will not even venture into a quantum analogy of wave collapse and particle paradox with regard to the presence of an observer of quantum experiments (partly because of my limited understanding and partly because it is a digression), but consciousness is an integral part of alchemy.

I don't see it is as digression. I believe it is at the core of alchemical philosophy.

I think Jung changed his mind about the reality of lab alchemy after a discussion with Archibald Cockren.

For me, Jung's most significant contribution to alchemical philosophy was his treatise on Synchronicity. The physicist Rupert Sheldrake formulated the possibility of such with his Morphic Field theory. Which in turn supports the theory of Quantum Resonance.

Synchronicity allows one to observe/experience the Universe Mind/Intelligence, God if you are religious, Tao if you are pragmatic. The Universe Intelligence operates outside of time as well and in time. For instance, recently I was involved in private conversations with some alchemists about this very topic. That was caught in the Synchronous Web and manifest through the Morphic Field emerging hear and now on this thread by Quantum Resonance.

So, thanks to Morphic Resonance; the jist of it goes:

From the article: http://www.fourmilab.ch/rpkp/stapp.html

"Following, then, the mathematics, instead of intuition, I shall adopt the assumption that the Schrodinger equation holds uniformly in the physical world. That is, I shall adopt the view that the physical universe, represented by the quantum state of the universe, consists merely of a set of tendencies that entail statistical links between mental events.

In fact, this point of view is not incompatible with the Copenhagen interpretation, which, although epistemological rather than ontological in character, rests on the central fact that in science we deal, perforce, with connections between human observations: the rest of science is a theoretical imagery whose connection to reality must remain forever uncertain."

It certainly is a thought provoking conundrum or paradox.

In alchemy the information unfolds to the depth of the operators observational skills. The deeper you look the more information there is. The more information you see the greater the influence you have on the nature expressed by the information systems unfolding. At the point of emergence of the information ideas and expectations and hopes are possible as the information is still undetermined or in flux.

The operator's expectations participate in the fixing or determination of the information flux, either negatively or positively: failure or success of the expectations is possible. Either way the operator will then utilize the fixed determination (result) of the experiment (experience) to initiate a new experiment where the operator's previous expectations have been refined (or more concisely focused) into an experimental procedure and applied to the emerging information system influencing the outcome to the desired goal or ideal. With enough cycles the emerging information system is synchronous or coincident with the operator's expectations. Hopefully:)

In alchemy "Philosophical" can mean many things. In the old texts it refers to specific knowledge about the nature of the materials used as opposed to the vulgar or common materials named in the allegorical illustrations. Usually the vulgar materials named look superficially similar to the philosophical preparations they're describing.

The Philosophical world is the Microcosm. It is populated by potential that unfolds into the Macrocosm as kinetic mass/energy information systems, which are projections of an eternal or timeless flux of three elements in one: spirit/soul/body where spirit is energizing, soul is uniqueness and body is manifestation. You cannot have one without the others.

Then there is the "you" component: the "observer:" the scintilla or divine spark, where divine means the three (philosophical principles) in one, inseparable yet separate, being experienced by the absolutely unknowable as a scintilla that is "you." We are all "me" and "you," depending on the perspective of the observer that is remote: you, or central: me. We are the same only differentiated by the Information System we observe.

Unless there is an observer the outcome is both, not either/or. It's like the Schrodinger's Cat analogy from quantum physics. The Cat in the box is both dead and live until one looks inside the box. In quantum chemistry the production is matter/energy at the point of emergence until it is observed. Then it is either particles or waves: substance or radiation.

Since the operator designs the instruments to determine the state of the production, the instrument is an observational device, but if no observer is operating the tool then the outcome is both, not either/or. At least that's how I see it right now.

As far as we know the Universe seems to work quite well utilizing the proportional relationships we've discovered over the millennia. So before we came along into the existence the laws of physics functioned without our observations and probably will do so long after we're gone. I believe this is a functional paradox manipulable in the lab with the artful input of the operator/observer. This is one way to open a paradox for manipulation to fix a point in space/time.

Engineers routinely discount the "paradoxical" solutions to equations because the outcome is of no engineering value in that you can't manufacture anything with the nonsense solutions. So they are called "invalid," though in reality it is "undefined."

Of course the ultimate Paradox is each of us. We are not any of the things we identify as "myself." Everything you might think you are can be objectified and possessed by calling it "mine." Once it is yours it cannot be you. So at the core we are no things but take things as our own.

I think that everything we become aware of can be explained, or will be explained once we’ve observed it enough to understand it. That may take a long time and many generations of observers to know it fully. Then there will always be new things we observe and don’t understand, so we fill in the gaps as best we can, at first building imperfect models and then finally getting it right to fit our expectations.

http://noetic.org/noetic/issue-four-november-2010/morphic-fields-and-morphic-resonance/
"The fields responsible for the development and maintenance of bodily form in plants and animals are called morphogenetic fields. In animals, the organization of behavior and mental activity depends on behavioral and mental fields. The organization of societies and cultures depends on social and cultural fields. All these kinds of organizing fields are morphic fields.

Morphic fields are located within and around the systems they organize. Like quantum fields, they work probabilistically. They restrict, or impose order upon, the inherent indeterminism of the systems under their influence. Thus, for example, a protein field organizes the way in which the chain of amino acids (the “primary structure” determined by the genes) coils and folds up to give the characteristic three-dimensional form of the protein, “choosing” from among many possible structures, all equally possible from an energetic point of view. Social fields coordinate the behavior of individuals within social groups, for example, the behavior of fish in schools or birds in flocks."

Quantum entanglement is morphic resonance. It even hits on the concept of Spiritus Mundi:

"...new systems should show an increasing tendency to come into being the more often they are repeated. They should become increasingly probable; they should happen more easily as time goes on. For example, when a new chemical compound is synthesized by research chemists and crystallized, it may take a long time for the crystal to form for the first time. There is no pre-existing morphic field for the lattice structure. But when the first crystals form, they will make it easier for similar crystals to appear anywhere in the world. The more often the compound is crystallized, the easier it should be to crystallize."

Personally I don't think the Philosopher's Stone can be achieved without Morphic Resonance or, put another way, Quantum entanglement. Working with the right matter is an operation involving chemical engineering on the quantum level in a very complex field of cyclic polymers morphing this way and that depending on ion doping within the flux. The field is kept in flux of formation by the operator/observer until the sought for resonance and entanglement is achieved. The outcome polymer formation could even be influenced by a shout, or perhaps a thought, synchronous with the regulation of the elements in the vessel.

Krisztian
03-05-2014, 09:28 PM
Personally I don't think the Philosopher's Stone can be achieved without Morphic Resonance or, put another way, Quantum entanglement. . .

I think you're onto something with that statement.

Those are modern terms (new descriptors), I think the Ancients would have called that "God's grace".

MarkostheGnostic
03-06-2014, 02:04 AM
I too am a fan of Rupert Sheldrake, and I agree that his ideas are very apt for the application to alchemical transmutation, as is quantum entanglement in the 'Implicate-Explicate Order' of David Bohm. To these, because I am equally interested in Spagyrics, are the ideas of Masaru Emoto, whose hypotheses about the Universal Solvent, water, may well be part of the puzzle pertaining to the Wet Path.

Birthing new crystals, or a new organic compound from a polymer flux, with the notion of morphic resonance sounds wonderfully sci-fi and occult simultaneously, but the consciousness component has been ignored since positivism, materialism and pure empiricism eliminated any vestiges of metaphysics from the sciences. Who knows to what extent consciousness operating from the unconscious, unarticulated range of the psyche, has contributed to the so-called physical sciences. I'm not even referring to well-known factoids like Friedrich Kekule's dream of an Ouroboric snake, and who awakened with the conscious idea of the ring-structure of organic molecules having arisen from the archetype.

I was fascinated by the original ruby LASER developed from the MASER in the early 1960s, partly because it was the first sci-fi death-ray,' (I was 10 years old with a copy of my friend' Sam's dad's Scientific American)and part of it was that my July birth stone is usually considered to be a ruby. Much later on, remembering the diamond & ruby ring my parents had given me while too young (which I lost while watching a school play in elementary school), the diamond and ruby in that little lost ring became images of the white and red drops (thig le, bindu) that migrate to the Brain and Root centers from the Heart in Vajrayana exercises). These emotional and magickal correspondences that I'm using are simply to illustrate alternative levels of association with certain substances that effect consciousness, and conversely, certain states of consciousness that may effect substances. I hope this didn't come across as hebephrenic 'word-salad.' :p

Ghislain
03-06-2014, 06:29 AM
I am sorry I haven't had the time to read through this thread in its entirety, but I would like to comment on post 16 by lwowl as it resonated with something I have been reading lately. If I repeat something that has already been said then I must apologise in advance.



the rest of science is a theoretical imagery whose connection to reality must remain forever uncertain

Could it be that this substance of uncertainty is the material used to build the certainty; once observed it becomes fixed.


So before we came along into the existence the laws of physics functioned without our observations and probably will do so long after we're gone.

If this statement can be joined with the one below...[which I find fascinating as it is something I have tried to explain to others, but can never find the correct words to do so...and now here they are :)]


Of course the ultimate Paradox is each of us. We are not any of the things we identify as "myself." Everything you might think you are can be objectified and possessed by calling it "mine." Once it is yours it cannot be you. So at the core we are no things but take things as our own.

Then, if we are "no thing" how could we have "come into existence" and this raises the question, "is it possible that the laws of physics do not function at all without 'our' observation as "no thing" may have existed before anything?


Engineers routinely discount the "paradoxical" solutions to equations because the outcome is of no engineering value in that you can't manufacture anything with the nonsense solutions. So they are called "invalid," though in reality it is "undefined."

Is the undefined Spiritus Mundi?

Perhaps that's why it is so hard to define :confused:

MTG "hebephrenic" disorganized schizophrenia, very descriptive :) I shall add that to my vocabulibrary.

Ghislain

Seth-Ra
03-06-2014, 07:43 AM
No, a fact, let's stick to gravity as a perfect example, is one thing which anyone can easily perceive and plainly see and experience, and a theory/speculation/conjecture/belief, say how gravity supposedly works, is another thing entirely different. One is a physical observable indisputable physical phenomenon, the other one is an attempt at rationalizing/explaining it.

I can say the same thing about transmutation. It is a fact. Period. It has been proven over and over again - not just by alchemists. It happens even now within each of our bodies, it happens in the earth, in the sun, etc etc.

So what? How do you use it? That is where the understanding of it comes in. Newton understood gravity one way, and everyone agreed and operated accordingly, and still do - but it wasnt the whole story, and Einstein revealed more.
Likewise, "scientists" understand things one way - Alchemists can reveal more (which is why we dont need nuclear reactors for transmuting).
Again, a key difference comes in the understanding of the language used - which is part of the initial initiation. One has to learn the language of the "scientists" - likewise the Alchemists. By comparison, the "scientist's" is "flat" - for it is only on one level (physical).


Again, if that was true then there would not be so much need of making such a big mystery regarding how to make it. They could very easily have published the whole process in plain words and let these "unworthy" people keep on preventing themselves from achieving it, while all the "worthy" ones would succeed. Of course, the fact is that things like "unworthy" and "worthy" are totally subjective concepts. Each individual has his own concept of what constitutes "worthy" or "unworthy". What may have been "worthy" for an ancient Graeco-Egyptian alchemist might have been totally "unworthy" to an Early Modern one.


Many do speak quite plainly. The language used is such that it is designed to open the mind to the higher realms. Even for those that did not, and failed at the Great Work, continued to follow and contribute to the flat-science of their chemistry and physics, that still led to the physical proof of the concepts - everything from higher realms/dimensions/frequencies, to literal transmutation. The language isnt wrong, it is plain, it does what its designed to. Im sorry if you cant understand this.

Spirit and the Higher(deeper) Laws have a standard/mode-of-operation/manifestation for the revealing to/pouring into a vessel (person or other substance). Its not that we (humans) dogmatically dictate who is "worthy" or not, its the law/agreement/logic of the Spirit/energy-flow.


Unfortunately, there is no such thing as "spiritual truths" since they can never be proven, such claims belong to the realm of speculation. If they were provable, the problem of different conflicting religions would have been solved a long time ago and no one would be fighting each other regarding whose beliefs are "true" or "false".

That is a horribly flawed premise. For one, they can, do and are proven by all who experience/realize them. For those who do not - for those who are blinded by the illusions of materialism (the one's that seek dominance and rulership), they will and do continue the wars.

Besides that, even "scientists" who use the same math and logic, dont agree on various things and "war" with each other. This is a base-human condition that only the Spirit heals and transmutes one away from.


This analogy is not quite true, since anyone can easily see that an iPhone works and does what its inventors say it does. It is not any "speculation/theory/conjecture/belief" but an easily perceived fact that can be demonstrated anytime anyone pleases, as long as they have a working iPhone with them. A crystal-ball, on the other hand, is just a claim that has never been proven by anyone. And if someone could really prove it, they could get a cool million dollars for their trouble:

http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/1m-challenge.html

Besides of course the much bigger reward of proving once and for all that "spirits" do exist, which would make a lot of people think twice about their way of behaving towards one another.

A blind and deaf person cannot tell an iPhone does anything - it might as well be a funny shaped hockey-puck. The analogy holds, whether you can see or hear it or not.

Its also a very faulty and ignorant mistake to think that those of us that can and do perform the Spiritual Communions we do, would be interested in whoring it out for something as worthless as money. It is equivalent to trying to sell the Stone. Its wrong all around and only puffers/frauds are interested in such nonsense.


This can be easily contested from historical witness accounts of transmutation performed by people who had no idea how to make the Stone themselves, yet for different reasons samples of it fell into their hands. Some of these witnesses were in fact former detractors of alchemy/transmutation who became convinced of the reality of the subject after they performed transmutations with their own hands by means of those samples (like the Irish poet, translator and historian Richard Stanihurst, for example, who witnessed no less than 15 transmutations, at least one of them, of mercury into gold, made by means of a small sample of a red powder given to him by an acquaintance who knew an alchemist who knew how to make it. After such decisive ocular, tangible proof, needless to say Stanihurst became a most ardent defender of alchemy.)

Again, you misunderstand. The (in this context) "non-believer" did not cause/create/perform the Transmute - i.e. they did not make the Stone/Powder; they didnt cause the magick. They simply did what the real Alchemist/"believer" instructed them to, after the Alchemist had already did the work of manifesting the miracle.


Again, such things as "spiritual relationship being manifested" can't be proven to anyone. They may seem like "facts" to you, but to no one else, unless you can really prove them to be so. And I don't mean by making assertions, but by actually performing something visible and measurable which can't really be explained or denied.


To those around me, i have done as you say. Those that know me, know. That is how many of us work; living catalysts for the world around us. So, while it may not be provable to you, because you outright refuse it, doesnt make it not a fact, just like someone who refused to believe the world was round. We who have made the journey, try to tell - mortal language is used to convey something that is immortal, and it is given new depth that those who are not ready cant hear/see, but their inability does not make us wrong.



All of these are speculative concepts, not "facts". Any biologist will tell you that living things and nature are not proof of anything regarding "spirits" or any other metaphysical claims.

Youre free to believe that if you wish, but there are biologists that think differently, and those of us that have experienced first hand, and on occasion brought others with us for a portion of the ride - we know better.


Unfortunately, the only one that lends itself to being tested is the "physical" one i.e. actual alchemy (because the "other" ones are not really "alchemy", they are actually metaphysics.)

The only one that lends itself to being tested by you, is the physical, but that doesnt invalidate the others for the rest of us. If you think metaphysics has nothing to do with Alchemy, then youre not understanding Alchemy. Perhaps its not for you - perhaps youd make a better chemist (and there is nothing wrong with that, so dont take it as an insult. Everyone to their own understanding and frequency). :)





~Seth-Ra

JDP
03-06-2014, 02:50 PM
Unfortunately, the only one that lends itself to being tested is the "physical" one i.e. actual alchemy (because the "other" ones are not really "alchemy", they are actually metaphysics.)

You are conflating chemistry with alchemy. Alchemy is an "occult science," a term which, from a strictly physical scientist's perspective is oxymoronic. Aside from alchemy's purely psychological reality, as C.G. Jung and his followers (Marie Louise von Franz, and Edward Edinger, most prominently), its physical 'labor' aspect, partakes as much from the machinations of ritual magick as it does from laboratory technique. For example, a classic alembic apparatus in alchemy is not merely a distillation device, it is a symbolic representation of the 'inner planets,' the psychic centers or chakras, which transmutes one form of energy into another (by physical parallel, the kinetic energy of rushing water can transfer to a turbine which in turn transmutes kinetic energy into heat and controlled kinetic energy in a turbine, which in turn is transmuted into electricity, which can produce hot incandescent or cool fluorescent light). Moreover, what occurs in the glass alembic is simultaneously occurring in the 'internal alembic' of the Operator. This inner-outer parallel is perhaps most clearly illustrated in Taoist alchemy's diagrammatic 'circulation of the light' wherein one has language like 'the lower and upper cauldron,' where the closed system is similar to a laboratory reflux apparatus (see Lu K'uan Yu's Taoist Yoga: Alchemy and Immortality).

If any of the physically impossible transmutations that are said to occur in the alchemist's laboratory do in fact occur (like the classic transmutation of Lead or Mercury into Gold), an entirely different paradigm about physical matter is being demonstrated. There is no high-energy particle accelerator creating a radioactive isotope by adding neutrons to a base metal. Where is the energy coming from that would give physical mass in sufficient quantities to be visible to the human eye let alone quantifiable at a microscopic level by spectroscopy? Furnace heat is not capable by the laws of physics. If, however, for the sake of argument, metals have 'spirits,' some essential quality that corresponds to an essence of a planetary body, and some kind of 'resonance' can be set in motion, the theory is that the matter in a flask can 'capture' that corresponding essence, but the intention (the single invariant aspect of consciousness according to Phenomenology) of the Operator is integral. The consciousness of the Operator, that is to say, the highest spiritual consciousness (Nous, Neshamah, Holy Spirit, Anima Mundi), that is God's immanence operating through the Operator), is integral to a transmutation. It is these factors which make the process preternatural as well as metaphysical, insofar as Spirit (archaic for Consciousness) in ontologically prior to matter (The Creator precedes the creation).

Alchemy is therefore an alternative religious endeavor, wherein the Operator is non-dualistically involved in the process of transmutation. Inner and outer are conjoined as ONE. As the 3rd line of The Emerald Tablet reads: "And as all things have been & arose from One by the mediation of one: so all things have their birth from this One Thing by adaptation." The One is Spirit, the One Thing is matter, just as in the Shiva-Shakti or Purusha-Prakriti apparent duality in Hindu thought.

No, I'm not. I distinguish alchemy from chemistry, in fact I even distinguish alchemy from the older "chymistry" of the 17th and part of the 18th century, which unlike the modern (i.e. Lavoisierian) chemistry that started from the late 18th century onward still very much accepted transmutation, and not only as theoretically possible, many chymists in fact were very positive that they had achieved it with their own particular methods, no "Philosophers' Stone" needed. Having said that, you do not need to conjure up "supernatural" things to make such a distinction. The alchemists themselves made a distinction between their science and "vulgar chymistry", but this distinction was based on their practice, which was more "philosophical", meaning more subtle, based on secret operations and techniques, than that of the "chymists" and "puffers" they attacked. The only time that alchemists bring up something that can be deemed "supernatural" is in that whole claim of a "Divine permission" or "Divine will" that supposedly allows one to know how to make this "Stone", a claim which, as I have pointed out before, they must not have taken very seriously themselves, otherwise their careful secrecy about its manufacture would have been pretty unnecessary.

The "laws" of physics and chemistry are in fact speculations/conjectures/theories themselves, assumptions and generalizations based on the empirical facts known to those sciences. Who says that it is impossible that the alchemists and chymists of past centuries couldn't have discovered some empirical facts that these more modern scientists have not discovered or failed to notice? If you read chemical literature and its rejection of transmutation and alchemy you won't fail to notice how dogmatic the whole thing is. I have never seen the work of any chemist who has actually bothered to systematically test many of the alleged proofs of transmutation that you can find in chymical books of the 17th and 18th century, for example. Yet you can see the persistence in rejecting the subject, despite the fact that chemists themselves don't have any definitive proof about such "impossibility". Even historians of science like Lawrence Principe (a chemist himself) acknowledges that even as late as the early 20th century chemistry still did not have even any theory that precluded the possibility of transmutation by means of making substances react with one another (even though Principe does not specifically mention what this 20th century theory is, he is obviously referring to the electron and its alleged role in chemical reactions, which supposedly prevents the nucleus of an atom from being altered, short of bombarding it with a particle accelerator that can get through the electron layers.) Curiously enough, this theory that supposedly precludes the possibility of transmutation by making substances react with one another is not original of chemistry but actually an import from physics, a science which is even more alien to the literature of alchemy and chymistry.

JDP
03-06-2014, 03:03 PM
I'll look into Waite's book, as I've read him since 1972 (and despite Crowley's rather dismissive and derisive attitude towards Waite). I am aware of Jung's misgivings. I read Richard Noll's books The Jung Cult and Aryan Christ after I (like Noll) were rejected from our application to train in Analytical Psychology. These facts do not deter from the very credible notion that many or most alchemists were projecting unconscious psychic contents onto their laboratory procedures. The shortcoming here, is that the second movement - re-absorbing those psychic contents from their targets - is missing. This is what seems to be intended in Spagyrics. The medicines have 'occult virtues' by reason of magickal correspondences with planetary spirits, and although not everyone who prepares elixirs, end, etc. is intentionally practicing Initiatory alchemy, that does not preclude that an Initiatory process can still be made of Spagyrics. Mark Stavish wrote of this in The Path of Alchemy.

Again, this is a reason why NOT "alchemy should be judged by different standards than other scientific claims, since it claims to achieve some peculiar physical phenomena." The transmutations are not occurring by strictly physical laws. I do not know how you regard the miracles in the New Testament, such as 'turning water to wine,' but at this stage of my life, I not only question the historicity of Iesous himself, but I have been shown that many of the events that comprise the New Testament are culled directly from the earlier Pyramid and Coffin texts of the Egyptians (see D.M. Murdock's Christ in Egypt if interested).

There was a time, long ago, where such miracles were taken literally and I listened to metaphysical explanations by Paramahansa Yogananda in pseudo-yogic jargon (Autobiography of a Yogi). Then, in seminary, I simply [bracketed] said miracles in a phenomenological way, suspending judgement one way or the other. Later, I saw miracles as midrash and metaphor, rather than metaphysics. After that, I waxed Gnostic, and began to consider Reality as 'The Matrix,' of a Demiurge (not The Architect of the Wachowski trilogy, but the Creator of this universe), in which "glitches" in The Matrix could occur (miracles, spooks, paranormal phenomena, etc.). Of course, from strictly theistic perspective, God the Creator doesn't make mistakes, but then again, in Kabbalism, there was a catastrophic bursting of the vessels at the beginning of time, and the creation requires a restoration (tikkun). So, perhaps there are 'permissible' opportunities for co-creation by morally upright individuals. The Psi functions of telepathy, and precognition are things I have personally experienced on many occasions. I am convinced of the veracity of other people's clairvoyance (knowing someone has died, been injured, etc.), but telekinesis is the closest Psi function to metallic transmutation, and I have never known or read anything credible (including Uri Geller's outrageous claims, even though I have seen a bent key (parapsycholgist/Egyptologist Bob Brier) and a cracked sapphire in a ring (Jean Houston's), which seemed was a star sapphire to begin with.

As Thomas is my favorite New Testament disciple, I will remain as 'doubting' as he is said to have been about the wounds of a physically resurrected Iesous. It seems that a resuscitated corpse would also have healing properties, as the biblical Iesous was said to have had on others, but more importantly, the 'empty tomb narratives' were more public relations writings than anything approaching journalistic accuracy. Resurrection for Paul was not a physical event, a resuscitation, but a spiritual verity. More midrash! I must agree with the highest Yoga doctrines that the power of Self-Realization, of "being in Christ" or Buddhist Realization of our True Nature as Eternal, trumps any lesser powers (siddhis) which manifest as mere materiality. Neither is Eternal Life the same thing as personal immortality. Wealth and immortality seem more like the misguided myths of Chinese alchemy, when the real goal is the same in Christianity as in Taoism. The Way (Tao) is The Way (Christ), is The Way..."A rose by any other name smells as sweet."

For an occultist, Waite was a pretty good rational and logical critic. That last book of his on the subject of alchemy is indeed worth a read. He pretty much debunked those "spiritualist" interpretations of alchemy so much in vogue during the late 19th and early 20th century, long before the historians of science did.

I think that you are very aware of the fact that Jung and his followers could never prove their claim about "projecting unconscious psychic contents". Such a concept is pretty much absent from alchemical literature. Even some of the alchemists Jung quotes (like Thomas Norton, for example) speak of being careful to choose lab assistants who are not dishonest as they might steal the Stone after it's finished (like he says happened to him.) Notice he is not worried about any "psychic projections" by these lab assistants he puts in charge of things while he is gone somehow interrupting the process and resulting in failure, he is worried that they aren't actually thieves who will run away with the finished product while the master is busy attending to other matters. So much for any alleged "psychic projections" of the alchemist himself really making a difference in the outcome of the operations.

Awani
03-06-2014, 03:27 PM
...the typical opinion of chemists regarding alchemy & transmutation: stating that no one has succeeded in making even a speck of gold by making any substances react with one another...

I am now of the opinion that trying to create gold is a fools game. I am not saying that it is something that is impossible, not at all... I am sure anything can be done, but what I am saying is that such a pursuit will make you mad, blind, greedy and in the end an asshole.

Gold = Money

Sure you can use gold for healing, but in general if you have 1 gram of gold, or more, in your possession you are in possession of money. Not that money is wrong, I just don't think any form of healthy self-improvement or search for enlightenment can ever be reached just by the mere act of trying to create gold... or even successfully creating gold. This is not the answer.

If an alchemist is NOT trying to achieve a higher state of existence/being, and is only focused on creating gold or transforming minerals, then this person is NOT an alchemist, but a chemist.

IMO.

So yes, I guess, this post is a general argument against Practical Alchemy as a whole. Not only do I think it is a waste of time, but I also think it will not, ever, yield any 'profits'... not unless the laboratory is the body. But chemistry is sure interesting... but a sacred art? Not really...

:cool:

JDP
03-06-2014, 04:32 PM
I can say the same thing about transmutation. It is a fact. Period. It has been proven over and over again - not just by alchemists. It happens even now within each of our bodies, it happens in the earth, in the sun, etc etc.

Where is this proof? According to modern chemistry and physics, it only happens inside nuclear reactors (whether natural, like the sun, or man-made.)


So what? How do you use it? That is where the understanding of it comes in. Newton understood gravity one way, and everyone agreed and operated accordingly, and still do - but it wasnt the whole story, and Einstein revealed more.

Gravity is a part of your everyday life, without it things would be very different, in fact, life as we know it would not even exist (just think of what would happen to our atmosphere without it.) Regarding Newton and Einstein and gravity: they only tried to provide explanations for it. Again, that is different from the fact that gravity just "is", and its effects can be directly observed by anyone. Whether someone's explanations regarding why or how gravity works are correct or not is a different issue. Once again: empirical fact here, theories/speculations/conjectures/beliefs over there.



Likewise, "scientists" understand things one way - Alchemists can reveal more (which is why we dont need nuclear reactors for transmuting).
Again, a key difference comes in the understanding of the language used - which is part of the initial initiation. One has to learn the language of the "scientists" - likewise the Alchemists. By comparison, the "scientist's" is "flat" - for it is only on one level (physical)

For there to be "another level" other than a physical one you must first prove that any other "level" actually exists. Good luck doing that (and no, personal beliefs and convictions do not count as "proof".)


Many do speak quite plainly. The language used is such that it is designed to open the mind to the higher realms. Even for those that did not, and failed at the Great Work, continued to follow and contribute to the flat-science of their chemistry and physics, that still led to the physical proof of the concepts - everything from higher realms/dimensions/frequencies, to literal transmutation. The language isnt wrong, it is plain, it does what its designed to. Im sorry if you cant understand this.

Not plainly enough, specially not regarding the initial materials to work with, their most carefully guarded secret. Otherwise anyone with any experimental ability could do it too, something which they obviously did not like, and some of them give very honest explanations as to why they don't want this knowledge to be spread around to the "vulgar", and it is not what people who think of alchemy as some sort of "spiritual quest" would expect: they were afraid that gold and silver were going to be devalued, and that everyone would want to become rich and stop plowing the fields and be productive in other activities necessary to human life, and so forth. Very materialistic (and realistic) objections, not the kind you would expect from an alleged "spiritual quest". Alchemists were in fact rather zealous and elitist people, pretty different behavior from all the piety they preached. Alchemy to them was sort of an "exclusive club" where only those whom they deemed "worthy" should be allowed in.

The language of alchemy is secretive, not like that of modern scientists, so the comparison is quite wrong. It might be difficult for many people to get acquainted with some of the lingo of modern chemistry, but once you do the meaning can be followed and the results replicated by anyone. The language of alchemy is quite different because it relies on totally arbitrary designations ("Green Lions", "Magnesias", "Toads", "Dragons", etc.), which may very well not be the same even among the alchemists themselves (in fact, alchemists themselves sometimes complain about the difficulty of deciphering their very own lingo since one thing can have many different code-words, and many code-words can designate just one thing) that you would have to pretty much be a mind-reader (and not just a "regular" one, but one who can actually read the mind of people who have been dead for centuries) to correctly guess what substances were really intended behind those names.


Spirit and the Higher(deeper) Laws have a standard/mode-of-operation/manifestation for the revealing to/pouring into a vessel (person or other substance). Its not that we (humans) dogmatically dictate who is "worthy" or not, its the law/agreement/logic of the Spirit/energy-flow.

Again, where is the proof that any of these "Higher (deeper) Laws" even exist to begin with? Once again, making assumptions about things one has no proof whatsoever and empirical facts are two very different things. "Worthy" and "unworthy" are purely subjective human concepts, not "laws" of any kind. What might seem "worthy" to a pagan might very well not be so to a Muslim. Purely subjective points of view.


That is a horribly flawed premise. For one, they can, do and are proven by all who experience/realize them. For those who do not - for those who are blinded by the illusions of materialism (the one's that seek dominance and rulership), they will and do continue the wars.

Not at all. Do you seriously think that if anyone could prove the reality of any of those claims that the world would not be affected by this and such behavior would pretty much banish? Do you seriously think that even the most greedy "materialist" would risk any sort of after-life repercussions for his behavior if he actually knew for sure that such things are very real and to be expected? You would have to be pretty out of touch with how most people are to believe that. Self-interest and self-preservation are the norm.


Besides that, even "scientists" who use the same math and logic, dont agree on various things and "war" with each other. This is a base-human condition that only the Spirit heals and transmutes one away from.

Scientists argue with each other on points they disagree (once again regarding theories, speculations, conjectures, explanations, but none of them denies empirical facts), they don't really wage "war" like I was referring to.


A blind and deaf person cannot tell an iPhone does anything - it might as well be a funny shaped hockey-puck. The analogy holds, whether you can see or hear it or not.

Bad analogy. A blind and deaf person cannot tell many other things other than iPhones, that doesn't mean they don't exist or do not work as intended. Plus the blind and deaf person still can tell that iPhones are at least tangible by touching them, so without anyone else's input he can figure out as much on his own. But who has seen, heard or touched any of the things you speak about? Your own testimony is just anecdotal. There is no proof to anyone else.


Its also a very faulty and ignorant mistake to think that those of us that can and do perform the Spiritual Communions we do, would be interested in whoring it out for something as worthless as money.

Once again, these are just claims that have no support. I can also make up things and tell you that I can project my mind to any corner of the universe I so please and see what is going there as if I was watching TV. See I just made up a totally empty boast that requires no proof whatsoever. This can be done by anyone. A very different thing is actually proving it.

Plus the excuse of not wanting the money reward is so not valid at all. The winner can easily donate all the money to his favorite charity, doesn't have to keep it. He would not only show the reality of such a claim (a reward greater for all mankind than any prize money) but would be considered a generous philanthropist to boot.


Again, you misunderstand. The (in this context) "non-believer" did not cause/create/perform the Transmute - i.e. they did not make the Stone/Powder; they didnt cause the magick. They simply did what the real Alchemist/"believer" instructed them to, after the Alchemist had already did the work of manifesting the miracle.

I did not "misunderstand" you, you just wrote it in a manner that was vague. You should have said the manufacture of the Stone itself, not the transmutation. The transmutation itself could be performed by anyone who had access to a sample of the Stone, whether he knew how to make it or not.


To those around me, i have done as you say. Those that know me, know. That is how many of us work; living catalysts for the world around us. So, while it may not be provable to you, because you outright refuse it, doesnt make it not a fact, just like someone who refused to believe the world was round. We who have made the journey, try to tell - mortal language is used to convey something that is immortal, and it is given new depth that those who are not ready cant hear/see, but their inability does not make us wrong.

I don't "outright refuse" anything, but proof is required for any given claim. As long as someone doesn't prove any claim that he/she puts forward, it remains just that, an unsubstantiated claim to everyone else.



Youre free to believe that if you wish, but there are biologists that think differently, and those of us that have experienced first hand, and on occasion brought others with us for a portion of the ride - we know better.

If you have seen any documentary about Creationism vs Evolution, you will easily perceive what the position of most biologists is. They say that they are perfectly capable of explaining life without conjuring up any supernatural elements. If you read biology text-books you will see pretty much the same thing. Modern scientists take it as a very important rule not to mix up their personal religious/spiritual beliefs, that they know very well rely on faith and can't be substantiated, with science. Science has to deal with demonstrable facts.



The only one that lends itself to being tested by you, is the physical, but that doesnt invalidate the others for the rest of us. If you think metaphysics has nothing to do with Alchemy, then youre not understanding Alchemy. Perhaps its not for you - perhaps youd make a better chemist (and there is nothing wrong with that, so dont take it as an insult. Everyone to their own understanding and frequency). :)

By me or anyone else. And one would need to prove first that even such "other alchemies" exist to begin with.

Alchemy claims to deal with physical substances and achieve physical, tangible results. The connection it has with metaphysics is in some of the "explanations" some alchemists tried to come up with for the results they allegedly achieved. But once again we are confronted with the difference between empirical facts and theories/speculations/conjectures. For argument's sake, let us take for granted that the Stone is real and that alchemy therefore did achieve what it claims. Does that follow that the theoretical "explanations" given by the alchemists must be correct? Not at all. Achieving something and coming up with a correct explanation for that achievement do not necessarily go hand in hand. For example, for thousands of years people have known how to make fire without actually understanding the role that gases in the atmosphere play in this phenomenon. That did not stop them from speculating regarding what exactly causes fire. Their explanations (some of them very interesting, by the way, despite their flaws) have been proven mistaken by Lavoisier and his followers (the founders of modern chemistry), yet that did not stop them one bit from making fires all the same. Fire is the empirical fact here, the "explanations" given to it by pre-Lavoisierian thinkers are the theories/speculations/conjectures.

JDP
03-06-2014, 04:37 PM
I am now of the opinion that trying to create gold is a fools game. I am not saying that it is something that is impossible, not at all... I am sure anything can be done, but what I am saying is that such a pursuit will make you mad, blind, greedy and in the end an asshole.

Gold = Money

Sure you can use gold for healing, but in general if you have 1 gram of gold, or more, in your possession you are in possession of money. Not that money is wrong, I just don't think any form of healthy self-improvement or search for enlightenment can ever be reached just by the mere act of trying to create gold... or even successfully creating gold. This is not the answer.

If an alchemist is NOT trying to achieve a higher state of existence/being, and is only focused on creating gold or transforming minerals, then this person is NOT an alchemist, but a chemist.

IMO.

So yes, I guess, this post is a general argument against Practical Alchemy as a whole. Not only do I think it is a waste of time, but I also think it will not, ever, yield any 'profits'... not unless the laboratory is the body. But chemistry is sure interesting... but a sacred art? Not really...

:cool:

The question of whether gold and silver can be artificially made by causing some substances to react with one another, as so many throughout the centuries have claimed to have achieved, is much more than just mere greed, though. Think of it as a very valid scientific inquiry. Even some chemists have given this perplexing question some thought, and the implications (and not just economic) it would have were it to be proven a fact.

Awani
03-06-2014, 05:11 PM
Yes if would have big simplifications if proven as fact no doubt. But if the goal is enlightenment it will not be found in the lab transmuting metals. It is a material dream, and my only point was that it doesn't matter; alchemist or chemist... if they both concentrate on making gold they are both fools.

:cool:

Andro
03-06-2014, 05:29 PM
But if the goal is enlightenment it will not be found in the lab transmuting metals.
It is a material dream, and my only point was that it doesn't matter; alchemist or chemist...

If they both concentrate on making gold they are both fools.

Maybe we're all fools, in a bigger fool's dream :)

To the point: Universal (High) Alchemy is concerned with employing/operating Causes (as opposed to 'affecting effects with effects', i.e. chemistry).

Its foundational framework is Generation (rather than combining/recombining what is already at hand) and it's Goal is Accelerated Evolution.

And Accelerated Evolution doesn't care if it's Men, Metals or anything else, for that matter.

Speaking of Generation, Practical Alchemy is not too far a cousin of Agriculture, only taken to a whole new level (i.e. 'Celestial Agriculture (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?2451-The-Celestial-Agriculture)').

We mine for 'Cause Seed' and let it grow/evolve in its proper Earth.
_______
I.M.S.U.

Green Lion
03-06-2014, 05:55 PM
Too bad you don't read JDP carefully...
Alchemy is the physical study of universe, Astrology is the astral study of the universe and Magic is the spiritual study of the universe.
The three pillars are related, but don't mix them.
That's the great error of "spiritual alchemy": a loss of marks.

Andro
03-06-2014, 08:21 PM
Alchemy is the physical study of universe.

Well, yes, it's definitely physical/material/corporeal in practice, just like all Generation across the Kingdoms in the Physical Universe.

It complies with laws which affect our (current) physical realm, and there are indeed measurable effects.


That's the great error of "spiritual alchemy": a loss of marks.

My personal view is that no special 'spiritual practice' is required of the Operator in order to facilitate 'Practical Alchemy'.

Given the proper conditions and attention, 'Nature' knows very well how to do its job.

However:

1. To arrive at the Keys/Laws/Principles of Alchemical Generation, a 'journey' is usually needed, which may be deemed 'spiritual' (in a sense - depending on the subjective definitions we use).

2. Some effects of Alchemical Generation may also be deemed as being of a 'spiritual' nature - again, depending on the subjective definitions we use.

3. I think there is a lot of misunderstanding about the role that 'practical'/'physical' Alchemical Generation plays in Evolution. But it's not my job (or my desire) to address this here & now.

_______
I.M.S.U.

MarkostheGnostic
03-06-2014, 10:49 PM
The main point by Jung is that the alchemists themselves were unconscious of their dynamics of projection. Jung analyzed their writings and motives, which remained for them on a conscious level. The alchemists didn't have a concept of the unconscious. Typically, dreams and visions in antiquity were assigned to spiritual agencies, perhaps their concept for something other than themselves (as conscious selves). That 'otherness,' was completely prone to the "Pre-Trans Fallacy" so named by Ken Wilber which has routinely, in spiritual writings, confused Unconscious conditions for Superconscious conditions, or again, Pre-personal for Transpersonal. Jung himself could not grok that a consciousness that transcended ego would be aware. In his preface to the Tibetan Book of the Great Liberation he stated that one becomes unconscious to the extent that the ego is transcended. He admitted of a "depotentiated ego," but did not enjoin transpersonal, transcendental states in his system. And I believe he knew this shortcoming, which is why when he had the opportunity of meeting Sri Ramana Maharshi, Jung declined, dismissively saying, "I know the type."

Of the claims of alchemists of yore, we can be certain of nothing more than their claims. I enjoy the myth of Nicholas (as did J.K. Rowling) and Perenelle Flamel, for example, but I currently see these stories of extreme longevity as a myth belonging to the twin hopes of alchemy: wealth and longevity, which, by extension, one might think gave two conditions for the attainment of wisdom. Of course, duration in time is not a prerequisite for the accrual of wisdom, (and neither is wealth, as a prerequisite for leisure time) if one understands Eckhart Tolle properly. The Realization of wisdom, of Eternal Life, of the very biblical kingdom of Heaven occurs outside of time, in Being, in the Eternal Now. So, the misunderstanding that it might require great life-spans to reach a spiritual goal is based on a radical misunderstanding, just as the multitudes of Christians misunderstand (as did Paul himself), that the End Times are the end of time - the moment, here and now, that one identifies with Being, not some historical apocalypse that ends the historical world at some mythic future time.

This Realization seems to me to be the Diamond Body, the Mani Stone, or the Wish-Fulfilling Gem, of the Vajrayana, the Immortal Fetus or Cubic Inch of Jade of the Taoists, the Corpus Incorruptibilis, Pearl of Great Price, or Sacred Heart of Christianity, or The Philosopher's Stone of Alchemy. If the jist of all credible religious forms is to point to the dream-like, transient, insubstantial nature of Reality (i.e., as spiritual) relative to The Real, why then the reverse focus on magickal substances? The White and Red 'drops' (Bindu, Thig le) in Vajrayana Buddhism, the Water and Blood in the crucifixion mythos of Christianity might be 'fixed' into substances (as the latter was in the Grail legends), but I think this is a misunderstanding of 'Solve et Coagula' at the highest levels of conceptualization.


http://i1194.photobucket.com/albums/aa379/MarkosthGnostic/heart.gif (http://s1194.photobucket.com/user/MarkosthGnostic/media/heart.gif.html)

Seth-Ra
03-07-2014, 07:20 AM
Where is this proof?

Proof that transmutation is a fact? :confused:

I said it - then you parroted it... :rolleyes:


According to modern chemistry and physics, it only happens inside nuclear reactors (whether natural, like the sun, or man-made.)

Except that you are wrong about it only happening inside a reactor.


One type of natural transmutation observable in the present occurs when certain radioactive elements present in nature spontaneously decay by a process that causes transmutation, such as alpha or beta decay. An example is the natural decay of potassium-40 to the argon-40 which forms most of the argon in air.
source (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_transmutation#Natural_vs._artificial_trans mutation)

That happens as a matter of course - no reactor needed.



Gravity is a part of your everyday life, without it things would be very different, in fact, life as we know it would not even exist (just think of what would happen to our atmosphere without it.) Regarding Newton and Einstein and gravity: they only tried to provide explanations for it. Again, that is different from the fact that gravity just "is", and its effects can be directly observed by anyone. Whether someone's explanations regarding why or how gravity works are correct or not is a different issue. Once again: empirical fact here, theories/speculations/conjectures/beliefs over there.

Transmutations are part of everyday life, since that is what created all elements of matter we are made of and see and use every day. While a lot of mainstream scientists may not agree with the idea of biological transmutations, doesnt mean it doesnt exists:


In 2003, Russian researchers claimed to have converted nuclear waste into non-radioactive elements using microbiological cultures, as well as the transmutation of manganese into iron in microbiological cultures.
source (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biological_transmutation#Other_assertions)




For there to be "another level" other than a physical one you must first prove that any other "level" actually exists. Good luck doing that (and no, personal beliefs and convictions do not count as "proof".)

To give you an alternative word - another frequency/dimension etc.
Science does favor such, as does the math, they say.
Regardless of what they say, plenty experience it. So who is it im supposed to be trying to "prove" something to, when i already know it? If you dont want to, or know how to experience it or find the proof, its not because its not there.


Not plainly enough, specially not regarding the initial materials to work with, their most carefully guarded secret.

Not plainly enough for you perhaps. Again, the language has a purpose. Its only your problem if you dont understand that.
Initial materials, in their purest form, are the Principles themselves - all matter is an extension of those on their various form/frequencies. To understand, reveals the way to operate.



Otherwise anyone with any experimental ability could do it too, something which they obviously did not like, and some of them give very honest explanations as to why they don't want this knowledge to be spread around to the "vulgar", and it is not what people who think of alchemy as some sort of "spiritual quest" would expect: they were afraid that gold and silver were going to be devalued, and that everyone would want to become rich and stop plowing the fields and be productive in other activities necessary to human life, and so forth. Very materialistic (and realistic) objections, not the kind you would expect from an alleged "spiritual quest". Alchemists were in fact rather zealous and elitist people, pretty different behavior from all the piety they preached. Alchemy to them was sort of an "exclusive club" where only those whom they deemed "worthy" should be allowed in.

A lot of "alchemy texts" are written by those that did not succeed, and were interested in the puffery of riches. Why they are considered "alchemists" instead of puffers is another matter altogether, and irrelevant to this. What is relevant, is that the ones who did know and succeed, werent concerned about fragile economies, but rather the soul/life of the reader.



The language of alchemy is secretive, not like that of modern scientists, so the comparison is quite wrong.

Thats subjective in and of itself. The language of alchemy is quite nicely understood by me and many others that get results. However, for me, the scientific equations and math is a confusing cluster-fuck of nonsense. (however, i have no problem with concepts and actually understanding the material presented - but the math is where it loses me. Magick math i understand better.)

Point is, level of difficulty in this manner is subjective. Alchemy; spirit and matter working in harmony, is easily understood by us and is used on a daily. Its not complicated or hard, for us. (not that there arent challenges and excitement and battles along the journey, but thats life.)

Pure physical science, does not come easy to all of us, cause we see it as unbalanced, where it may be the only logical thing in your mind that makes sense.



It might be difficult for many people to get acquainted with some of the lingo of modern chemistry, but once you do the meaning can be followed and the results replicated by anyone. The language of alchemy is quite different because it relies on totally arbitrary designations ("Green Lions", "Magnesias", "Toads", "Dragons", etc.), which may very well not be the same even among the alchemists themselves (in fact, alchemists themselves sometimes complain about the difficulty of deciphering their very own lingo since one thing can have many different code-words, and many code-words can designate just one thing) that you would have to pretty much be a mind-reader (and not just a "regular" one, but one who can actually read the mind of people who have been dead for centuries) to correctly guess what substances were really intended behind those names.

Those who complain about the language, often do so because they are simply recipe hunters that have not gotten acquainted with their intuition. They are sheep looking for an external Messiah to lead them into some promise-land. They cannot see on their own.
Yes, the language either weeds them out, or initiates their growth. That is the point. Because without the understanding they cant do anything more than what they already are: grasping at straws looking for a handout/recipe.



Again, where is the proof that any of these "Higher (deeper) Laws" even exist to begin with? Once again, making assumptions about things one has no proof whatsoever and empirical facts are two very different things. "Worthy" and "unworthy" are purely subjective human concepts, not "laws" of any kind. What might seem "worthy" to a pagan might very well not be so to a Muslim. Purely subjective points of view.

Im not sure if you seriously cant understand, or if youre just being argumentative. I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume its just not clicking for you - so i'll dumb it down some more. (i apologize if that sounds like an insult - its not intended as one, but from my standpoint, that is exactly what im having to do and its tedious.)

"Worthy" and "unworthy" in this does not mean "chosen at random or by bias" - it is the equivalent of 2+2=4 = worthy and 2+2=6 = not worthy. Do you see? Call it spirit, call it frequency/energy whatever helps you sleep at night - it operates by deeper fundamental structures of order, and it is by that, that "worthiness" of things is determined. This does not make things "worthless" - except in the context. As stated previously, if you are more of a scientist, that isnt an insult - it just means your worth is not alchemy. It is the same concept of judging a fish by the same standard as a dog, or cat. Living things made by the same Primal Essence/Spirit/Quintessence - but difference frequencies of manifesting to different ends.



Not at all. Do you seriously think that if anyone could prove the reality of any of those claims that the world would not be affected by this and such behavior would pretty much banish? Do you seriously think that even the most greedy "materialist" would risk any sort of after-life repercussions for his behavior if he actually knew for sure that such things are very real and to be expected? You would have to be pretty out of touch with how most people are to believe that. Self-interest and self-preservation are the norm.

Im sorry, but that is unrealistically naive. Humans do not, historically and demonstrably even now, act the way they do because someone, be it a scientist or a priest, tells them, with words or math, that there is punishment waiting them. Judges, cops, etc already promise punishment. Criminals are unwavered by it.

You cannot prove something to someone that doesnt want it to be proven. No matter your "source" - it is a matter of conviction, of faith/knowing in your experience. We who experience the spiritual, do not care that those who havent dont think it exists - cause to those that know, it Is, regardless of what the blind/deaf to it think about it.



Scientists argue with each other on points they disagree (once again regarding theories, speculations, conjectures, explanations, but none of them denies empirical facts), they don't really wage "war" like I was referring to.

The theories/speculation etc - that they come to by studying the same empirical facts and same laws of mathematics... yet cant agree on. How quaint their "fixed facts" are in doing nothing. :D



Bad analogy. A blind and deaf person cannot tell many other things other than iPhones, that doesn't mean they don't exist or do not work as intended. Plus the blind and deaf person still can tell that iPhones are at least tangible by touching them, so without anyone else's input he can figure out as much on his own. But who has seen, heard or touched any of the things you speak about? Your own testimony is just anecdotal. There is no proof to anyone else.

The analogy holds up just fine, since the compared-to-object was a real object (crystal ball). lol You can see and hold those, though they can be a bit heavy. ;)

You ask who else has seen, heard or touched the things i speak about - i told you previously those who actually know me and are around me. While i always see these things when they come up, sometimes the ones around me do as well, as well as seeing the matter effected. If it were only me, for all this time, and never anyone else even glimpsing a small portion of it - i would admit i could be schizophrenic. But its not just me. I have, and do have witnesses. You would not accept their testimony either because they apparently dont have the right Phd to make them sultans of indisputable proof (to you anyway). That is exactly my point.



Once again, these are just claims that have no support. I can also make up things and tell you that I can project my mind to any corner of the universe I so please and see what is going there as if I was watching TV. See I just made up a totally empty boast that requires no proof whatsoever. This can be done by anyone. A very different thing is actually proving it.

Agreed that anyone can say what they want. The only real way to prove anything though, is to try it yourself - and while that will not prove it entirely to the world as a whole, you will know if its right for you or not.
Before there was a concept of gravity - the force existed, but was not thought of.
The same forces im talking about that determine one's level of enlightenment/evolution (towards any end of the spectrum and all in between) are still there, whether we term a name or concept to them, and they still are governing your ability to understand me or not. I call it Spirit, or the Order/Consciousness behind the interactions of the Frequencies of All reality. You can call it whatever you please. Hell, a Jedi can call it the Force - it still Is.


Plus the excuse of not wanting the money reward is so not valid at all. The winner can easily donate all the money to his favorite charity, doesn't have to keep it. He would not only show the reality of such a claim (a reward greater for all mankind than any prize money) but would be considered a generous philanthropist to boot.

Flamel made gold and gave it away. Did that prove anything to people? To many it proved he had a legendary artifact - but it didnt change a damn thing about human nature or how the rest of the world kept ticking. Nowadays they'd wanna be studied like a lab-rat, as if that held the key. Again, its naive to think that someone "proving" such to a scientist, or group of them, or whatever, would change the entire world's perception. There have been and are plenty of accounts of life after death, spiritual encounters, information being learned while "dead" that shouldnt be able to be learned according to the convention, etc etc - people turn a blind eye to what they dont wanna hear and no one will convince them of what they have no interest in.


I did not "misunderstand" you, you just wrote it in a manner that was vague. You should have said the manufacture of the Stone itself, not the transmutation. The transmutation itself could be performed by anyone who had access to a sample of the Stone, whether he knew how to make it or not.

Fine, we can play semantics if you like - the point stands. The one that experiences/knows/"believes" (in this sense) is the one that caused the miracle (by production of the Stone), while the other one simply watches, or follows the instructions of how to set up the use of the miracle. Just because it left the unbeliever's/not-knowing person's hand last, doesnt mean its his, or his transmutation.


I don't "outright refuse" anything, but proof is required for any given claim. As long as someone doesn't prove any claim that he/she puts forward, it remains just that, an unsubstantiated claim to everyone else.

You claim its an unsubstantiated claim to everyone else - but you have no proof that you can speak for everyone else. You also havent proven that you dont outright refuse what is being presented.

The thing you are failing to understand the most about what im saying is this: im not attacking your scientific stance/view of things. I do find it to be unbalanced and lacking. But i dont fault you for it. You not being able to see the Spiritual side of things, for whatever reason, is what it is. Makes you a good scientist, not alchemist.
With that, just because i see it as unbalanced, doesnt invalidate it, unbalanced doesnt mean totally wrong. The same is true about the Spiritual side - just because you dont agree or cant see, doesnt invalidate the claim or make it less factual.

As i said, the Principles are both literal and symbolic - factual and mythical. If you see it, you know it. If you only see a part of it, you know that part - it doesnt invalidate the other part though.


If you have seen any documentary about Creationism vs Evolution, you will easily perceive what the position of most biologists is. They say that they are perfectly capable of explaining life without conjuring up any supernatural elements. If you read biology text-books you will see pretty much the same thing. Modern scientists take it as a very important rule not to mix up their personal religious/spiritual beliefs, that they know very well rely on faith and can't be substantiated, with science. Science has to deal with demonstrable facts.

Key words to that:
They say that they are perfectly capable of explaining life without conjuring up any supernatural elements.

Just because they say it, doesnt make it fact, remember. ;)

Reminds me of a story/joke i once i heard:

Scientists go to God and say "Ok God, we've figured out how to create just like you, youre no longer needed." God smiles and says "Ok, prove it and i'll let you run it."

So God does his demonstration first, he reaches down and grabs a hand full of dirt and creates a man. The scientists smile confidently and step up to do the same. When they grab a hand full of dirt, God interrupts them and says "Wait a minute, you have to get your own dirt." :cool:

They can say and claim whatever they like - but those of us that see the soul/consciousness/Spirit, within one another, ourselves, all that is living, even the living things that appear inanimate - all that is the living All/One, we know it is not purely mechanical. Matter doesnt create Life - Life creates matter.



Alchemy claims to deal with physical substances and achieve physical, tangible results. The connection it has with metaphysics is in some of the "explanations" some alchemists tried to come up with for the results they allegedly achieved. But once again we are confronted with the difference between empirical facts and theories/speculations/conjectures. For argument's sake, let us take for granted that the Stone is real and that alchemy therefore did achieve what it claims. Does that follow that the theoretical "explanations" given by the alchemists must be correct? Not at all. Achieving something and coming up with a correct explanation for that achievement do not necessarily go hand in hand. For example, for thousands of years people have known how to make fire without actually understanding the role that gases in the atmosphere play in this phenomenon. That did not stop them from speculating regarding what exactly causes fire. Their explanations (some of them very interesting, by the way, despite their flaws) have been proven mistaken by Lavoisier and his followers (the founders of modern chemistry), yet that did not stop them one bit from making fires all the same. Fire is the empirical fact here, the "explanations" given to it by pre-Lavoisierian thinkers are the theories/speculations/conjectures.

Again, a comparison of an enlightened, accomplished adept (achieving the Stone), vs a recipe-hunting sheep grasping at straws and writing books on their many, many, many attempts, full of their speculations etc... its just all around off.
The ones that held the real wisdom, had things built that stood/stand the test of time, with such precision and abilities that they(scientists) say wasnt possessed back then. Silliness. :)

So once again, only understanding/realizing one part, doesnt invalidate the other part, and no one can truly prove it to you, except you yourself. The rest is semantics, and endless circle-chasing. ;)

Take it, leave it, do what you will. I think ive about said all i can, as its getting hella-repatitive. lol

Again, if anything i said sounded like an insult, im sorry. It really is not meant to be. Good luck on your endeavors. :)




~Seth-Ra

Illen A. Cluf
03-07-2014, 12:09 PM
.

A lot of "alchemy texts" are written by those that did not succeed, and were interested in the puffery of riches. Why they are considered "alchemists" instead of puffers is another matter altogether, and irrelevant to this. What is relevant, is that the ones who did know and succeed, werent concerned about fragile economies, but rather the soul/life of the reader.



Seth-Ra, I'm curious as to which alchemists you believe were not puffers and did succeed?

Ghislain
03-07-2014, 01:41 PM
When partaking in discussions such as these it is imperative to distinguish the objective from the subjective. If this is not done then what may seem like a normal rational conversation is actually meaningless.

E.G. when one person is talking about dogs in general, but the other is only talking about their own dog from their own personal perspective.


sub•jec•tive [suh b-jek-tiv]

adjective

1. existing in the mind; belonging to the thinking subject rather than to the object of thought (opposed to objective ).

2. pertaining to or characteristic of an individual; personal; individual: a subjective evaluation.

3. placing excessive emphasis on one's own moods, attitudes, opinions, etc.; unduly egocentric.

4. Philosophy . relating to or of the nature of an object as it is known in the mind as distinct from a thing in itself.

5. relating to properties or specific conditions of the mind as distinguished from general or universal experience.

World English Dictionary

1. belonging to, proceeding from, or relating to the mind of the thinking subject and not the nature of the object being considered

2. of, relating to, or emanating from a person's emotions, prejudices, etc: subjective views

3. relating to the inherent nature of a person or thing; essential

4. existing only as perceived and not as a thing in itself

5. med (of a symptom, condition, etc) experienced only by the patient and incapable of being recognized or studied by anyone else

6. grammar See also nominative denoting a case of nouns and pronouns, esp in languages having only two cases, that identifies the subject of a finite verb and (in formal use in English) is selected for predicate complements, as in It is I

— n
7. grammar
a. the subjective case
b. a subjective word or speech element

Source: (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/subjective?s=t)



ob•jec•tive

noun

1. something that one's efforts or actions are intended to attain or accomplish; purpose; goal; target: the objective of a military attack; the objective of a fund-raising drive.

2. Grammar.

a.
Also called objective case. (in English and some other languages) a case specialized for the use of a form as the object of a transitive verb or of a preposition, as him in The boy hit him, or me in He comes to me with his troubles.

b.
a word in that case.

3. Also called [u]object glass , object lens , objective lens. Optics. (in a telescope, microscope, camera, or other optical system) the lens or combination of lenses that first receives the rays from the object and forms the image in the focal plane of the eyepiece, as in a microscope, or on a plate or screen, as in a camera. See diag. under microscope.

adjective

4. being the object or goal of one's efforts or actions.

5. not influenced by personal feelings, interpretations, or prejudice; based on facts; unbiased: an objective opinion.

6. intent upon or dealing with things external to the mind rather than with thoughts or feelings, as a person or a book.

7. being the object of perception or thought; belonging to the object of thought rather than to the thinking subject (opposed to subjective ).

8. of or pertaining to something that can be known, or to something that is an object or a part of an object; existing independent of thought or an observer as part of reality.


World English Dictionary

adjective

1. existing independently of perception or an individual's conceptions: are there objective moral values?

2. undistorted by emotion or personal bias

3. of or relating to actual and external phenomena as opposed to thoughts, feelings, etc

4. med (of disease symptoms) perceptible to persons other than the individual affected

5. grammar See also accusative denoting a case of nouns and pronouns, esp in languages having only two cases, that is used to identify the direct object of a finite verb or preposition and for various other purposes. In English the objective case of pronouns is also used in many elliptical constructions (as in Poor me! Who, him? ), as the subject of a gerund (as in It was me helping him ), informally as a predicate complement (as in It's me ), and in nonstandard use as part of a compound subject (as in John, Larry, and me went fishing )

6. of, or relating to a goal or aim

Source: (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/objective)

Both are valid arguments if one states what perspective one is basing those arguments upon.

I think it is quite clear which is which when one looks into the previous texts, but this is not always clear to the participants.

Perhaps we should state if we are looking at the "Aspects of Alchemy" subjectively or objectively.


Ghislain

JDP
03-07-2014, 05:48 PM
Proof that transmutation is a fact? :confused:

I said it - then you parroted it... :rolleyes:

You seem confused by your own statements. Here is what you said:

"I can say the same thing about transmutation. It is a fact. Period. It has been proven over and over again - not just by alchemists. It happens even now within each of our bodies, it happens in the earth, in the sun, etc etc."

So where is the proof that the "transmutation inside each of our bodies" is happening? Of course I was not referring to the sun or spontaneous decay of radioactive substances, since these are well known and documented. I was only referring to your particular claim as if it was a "proven" thing, which you lumped with those that have actually been proven to exist.



Except that you are wrong about it only happening inside a reactor.


source (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_transmutation#Natural_vs._artificial_trans mutation)

That happens as a matter of course - no reactor needed.

That happens inside radioactive materials only, which are basically natural "reactors" on their own, no need of outside help. It does not happen in stable substances. So you are still wrong.


Transmutations are part of everyday life, since that is what created all elements of matter we are made of and see and use every day. While a lot of mainstream scientists may not agree with the idea of biological transmutations, doesnt mean it doesnt exists:


source (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biological_transmutation#Other_assertions)

That remains a controversial subject, yet to be proven without any doubt. Modern chemistry still does not accept these alleged transmutations.


To give you an alternative word - another frequency/dimension etc.
Science does favor such, as does the math, they say.
Regardless of what they say, plenty experience it. So who is it im supposed to be trying to "prove" something to, when i already know it? If you dont want to, or know how to experience it or find the proof, its not because its not there.

Again, these are just uncorroborated claims. Anyone can make these. They are a dime a dozen. The world has always been full of people making such claims. Proving that such things actually exist and anyone can achieve them is a whole different deal.


Not plainly enough for you perhaps. Again, the language has a purpose. Its only your problem if you dont understand that.
Initial materials, in their purest form, are the Principles themselves - all matter is an extension of those on their various form/frequencies. To understand, reveals the way to operate.

For me and for anyone, including you. Interpretations of vague or obscure passages are totally arbitrary until actually proven to be effective. Have you really confected a powder that transmutes many times its own weight of base metal into silver or gold? Somehow I think you will say "yes", but somehow I can also predict that you will always find 1001 excuses not to prove that you really have it. How do I know this? Plenty of personal experience with such boasts, plus the accumulated experience of others throughout the centuries. People like Michael Maier, Heinrich Khunrath, Gabriel Plattes, Richard Stanihurst, etc. even wrote texts devoted to how to spot charlatans, cheats or those making empty boasts regarding possession of the Stone. One of the obvious signs of someone who simply could not put his money where his mouth is was the reluctance of the claimant to submit a sample of his alleged "Stone" for testing. This was always seen as a sign of dishonesty on the claimant's part, someone who did not really have what he claimed he had, and it doesn't need to be explained why this is such a clear and blatant sign. Needless to say, the same sound logic and common sense of those older writers applies today. "The proof is in the pudding", as the popular saying goes.



A lot of "alchemy texts" are written by those that did not succeed, and were interested in the puffery of riches. Why they are considered "alchemists" instead of puffers is another matter altogether, and irrelevant to this. What is relevant, is that the ones who did know and succeed, werent concerned about fragile economies, but rather the soul/life of the reader.

Then I am afraid that you will be disappointed by the bulk of the literature actually being written by such "puffers". Even occultists like A.E. Waite already noticed that most alchemical literature is concerned with pretty much little else other than making the Philosophers' Stone and applying it to transmutation and medicinal/longevity purposes.



Thats subjective in and of itself. The language of alchemy is quite nicely understood by me and many others that get results.

Again, these are just your claims, which as far as I can tell you have never proven to any panel of impartial and trustworthy witnesses. Anyone can make such claims of being able to understand things others do not. Actually proving them is a whole different story.



Those who complain about the language, often do so because they are simply recipe hunters that have not gotten acquainted with their intuition. They are sheep looking for an external Messiah to lead them into some promise-land. They cannot see on their own.
Yes, the language either weeds them out, or initiates their growth. That is the point. Because without the understanding they cant do anything more than what they already are: grasping at straws looking for a handout/recipe.

Actually even the alchemists themselves often complain about the obscure, vague, and even sometimes contradictory language employed in the subject and how arbitrary it can be from one author to another, or even from one author's book to the next! There were no set of established "rules" for assigning arbitrary names to substances, so basically "anything goes" according to the fancy of each writer. In fact, the heavy use of this tactic once again betrays the claim of some boasting alchemists who say that they could indeed write the whole process for the Stone in plain language -no symbols, no code-words, no obscurities, no vagueness, just plain language that could be followed by anyone- and still without an alleged "Divine permission" the seeker would still fail. Of course, the fact that not a single one of them put his money where his mouth was in this regard only shows that they did not really believe such claims. In fact, often the alchemists who make such a boast are in fact among the obscurest writers themselves. Totally the opposite of what one would expect if they really believed what they claimed about some supernatural "permission" arbitrarily determining who is "worthy" of succeeding being necessary.


Im not sure if you seriously cant understand, or if youre just being argumentative. I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume its just not clicking for you - so i'll dumb it down some more. (i apologize if that sounds like an insult - its not intended as one, but from my standpoint, that is exactly what im having to do and its tedious.)

No, not at all, I have found your posts quite "dumbed" enough as they are, no need to bring them down from your normal level ;)


"Worthy" and "unworthy" in this does not mean "chosen at random or by bias" - it is the equivalent of 2+2=4 = worthy and 2+2=6 = not worthy. Do you see? Call it spirit, call it frequency/energy whatever helps you sleep at night - it operates by deeper fundamental structures of order, and it is by that, that "worthiness" of things is determined. This does not make things "worthless" - except in the context. As stated previously, if you are more of a scientist, that isnt an insult - it just means your worth is not alchemy. It is the same concept of judging a fish by the same standard as a dog, or cat. Living things made by the same Primal Essence/Spirit/Quintessence - but difference frequencies of manifesting to different ends.

Again, purely arbitrary and subjective human concepts attributed to things ("spirits", mysterious "frequencies/energies", "Primal Essences", "Quintessence", etc.) no one has ever proved that they even exist in the first place. Your whole line of argumentation relies on these assumptions about things you yourself can't even prove they exist. You are basing them on your personal beliefs and convictions, which may or may not be exactly those of any other random person. Purely arbitrary and subjective stuff.



Im sorry, but that is unrealistically naive. Humans do not, historically and demonstrably even now, act the way they do because someone, be it a scientist or a priest, tells them, with words or math, that there is punishment waiting them. Judges, cops, etc already promise punishment. Criminals are unwavered by it.

There is a big difference between what a human cop or judge can do, and a "Divine" one that you won't be able to escape somewhere He/It can't reach you. Crooks in the real world know they have a good chance of getting away with crime, that's what motivates them. They are willing to risk it if they know they have a chance of getting away with it. Rest assured that if they knew that all their crimes would end up in certain punishment, no matter what they did to try to avoid it, they would quite surely start getting into other "professions" where they would know that the only outcome is not going to be them on the losing side for sure. People aren't that stupid and self-destructive. Give them some credit.


You cannot prove something to someone that doesnt want it to be proven. No matter your "source" - it is a matter of conviction, of faith/knowing in your experience. We who experience the spiritual, do not care that those who havent dont think it exists - cause to those that know, it Is, regardless of what the blind/deaf to it think about it.

And who says that "someone" does not want it to be proven? Once again, making assumptions about what others think or want to think. The fact remains that no one has proven any of that stuff. It remains just the variable personal convictions and beliefs of each individual.


The theories/speculation etc - that they come to by studying the same empirical facts and same laws of mathematics... yet cant agree on. How quaint their "fixed facts" are in doing nothing. :D

The empirical facts remain, it is the theories/speculations regarding them that can change and vary. This is not "strange" at all. Anyone can observe a fire or gravity at work and plainly see how real they are, but trying to "explain" why things are or how they work is a much more complicated matter that involves abstract thought. Lots of things can go wrong or right in this process. Yet the empirical fact being "explained" will remain the same. The gravity and fire we can plainly perceive today are the exact same ones that some people in centuries past perceived themselves and tried to attribute to the "earth element" being "heavier" than the "air element", or to a "sulphurous" principle supposedly escaping certain materials when they get heated. Yet to us such "explanations" seem quite incorrect and based on mistaken theoretical assumptions. We have other ways of "explaining" them which seem much more logical and based on other more "sound" theoretical assumptions. Apply all this to the Stone (if we take it for granted that it does indeed exist, for argument's sake) and the alchemists' claims of how it is achieved.


The analogy holds up just fine, since the compared-to-object was a real object (crystal ball). lol You can see and hold those, though they can be a bit heavy. ;)

Well, I think you know very well that it is not the substance of the crystal ball itself that is being questioned here, but what some claim they can do with it ;)


You ask who else has seen, heard or touched the things i speak about - i told you previously those who actually know me and are around me. While i always see these things when they come up, sometimes the ones around me do as well, as well as seeing the matter effected. If it were only me, for all this time, and never anyone else even glimpsing a small portion of it - i would admit i could be schizophrenic. But its not just me. I have, and do have witnesses. You would not accept their testimony either because they apparently dont have the right Phd to make them sultans of indisputable proof (to you anyway). That is exactly my point.

This is equivalent to me saying: "that claim I told you about me being able to project my mind to the 4 corners of the Universe in an instant and seeing what is going on anywhere as if I was watching TV has been witnessed by all my friends and people around me..." And the "proof" of this other claim is where??? It still remains as unproven as always. Adding more claims to another unproven claim is not "proof" either.


Agreed that anyone can say what they want. The only real way to prove anything though, is to try it yourself - and while that will not prove it entirely to the world as a whole, you will know if its right for you or not.
Before there was a concept of gravity - the force existed, but was not thought of.
The same forces im talking about that determine one's level of enlightenment/evolution (towards any end of the spectrum and all in between) are still there, whether we term a name or concept to them, and they still are governing your ability to understand me or not. I call it Spirit, or the Order/Consciousness behind the interactions of the Frequencies of All reality. You can call it whatever you please. Hell, a Jedi can call it the Force - it still Is.

Well, it seems to me that "Jedis" don't shy away from proving their claims as very much real. Darth Vader himself almost choked a guy who was poking fun at his belief in the "Force" from across the room without actually touching him. I saw this with my very own eyes. Of course, it needs to be said that it was at the movies on the silver screen, where anything can happen.


Flamel made gold and gave it away. Did that prove anything to people? To many it proved he had a legendary artifact - but it didnt change a damn thing about human nature or how the rest of the world kept ticking. Nowadays they'd wanna be studied like a lab-rat, as if that held the key. Again, its naive to think that someone "proving" such to a scientist, or group of them, or whatever, would change the entire world's perception. There have been and are plenty of accounts of life after death, spiritual encounters, information being learned while "dead" that shouldnt be able to be learned according to the convention, etc etc - people turn a blind eye to what they dont wanna hear and no one will convince them of what they have no interest in.

Yes, but such accounts are not proven either. They remain just that: anecdotal accounts. What I mean is definitive, irrefutable proof that such "spiritual encounters" exist. That would most certainly have a huge impact on the world and society.


Fine, we can play semantics if you like - the point stands. The one that experiences/knows/"believes" (in this sense) is the one that caused the miracle (by production of the Stone), while the other one simply watches, or follows the instructions of how to set up the use of the miracle. Just because it left the unbeliever's/not-knowing person's hand last, doesnt mean its his, or his transmutation.

That's of course going by your assumption that the alchemists who claim that making the Stone requires some sort of "Divine intervention" are actually correct.

The semantics was necessary to be pointed out, though, because the Stone is the transmuting agent, not the transmutation itself. The transmutation can be carried out by anyone. The issue is the confection of the transmuting agent.


You claim its an unsubstantiated claim to everyone else - but you have no proof that you can speak for everyone else. You also havent proven that you dont outright refuse what is being presented.

But we are on the same boat here: you can't prove that everyone else, or even just many people, knows it to be a fact either. I can't prove that it does not exist or that it does exist, I just say that there is no proof of it existing or not existing either way. And since you are the claimant for it existing, the burden of proof is on you. And even if you can find others who agree with you, could they really prove it to be so, or would they also have to rely simply on unsubstantiated assertions?


The thing you are failing to understand the most about what im saying is this: im not attacking your scientific stance/view of things. I do find it to be unbalanced and lacking. But i dont fault you for it. You not being able to see the Spiritual side of things, for whatever reason, is what it is. Makes you a good scientist, not alchemist.
With that, just because i see it as unbalanced, doesnt invalidate it, unbalanced doesnt mean totally wrong. The same is true about the Spiritual side - just because you dont agree or cant see, doesnt invalidate the claim or make it less factual.

Believing in things that are not proven is faith. You have faith in such things, therefore to you they seem very logical, possible and perhaps even "real". That is fine, there is no problem with that. Those are your personal beliefs. But they can't be conjured up to try to explain things which purport to be very much tangible "facts", like the Philosophers' Stone. If alchemists did not describe this thing as a tangible, weighable, measurable, testable substance with very tangible, weighable, measurable, testable effects on metals and people, animals and plants, but some sort of immaterial concept existing somewhere in the realm of speculation, then such "explanations" conjuring up intangible things that no one has ever proven to exist in the first place might not be out of place.



Key words to that:

Just because they say it, doesnt make it fact, remember. ;)


That applies very well to all these "supernatural" claims, like this one quoted below ;)


They can say and claim whatever they like - but those of us that see the soul/consciousness/Spirit, within one another, ourselves, all that is living, even the living things that appear inanimate - all that is the living All/One, we know it is not purely mechanical. Matter doesnt create Life - Life creates matter.



Again, a comparison of an enlightened, accomplished adept (achieving the Stone), vs a recipe-hunting sheep grasping at straws and writing books on their many, many, many attempts, full of their speculations etc... its just all around off.
The ones that held the real wisdom, had things built that stood/stand the test of time, with such precision and abilities that they(scientists) say wasnt possessed back then. Silliness. :)

But plenty of those mistaken theories/assumption come from books by those very "enlightened, accomplished adepts" claiming to have achieved the Stone and who also attack those "puffers". For example, the famous and respected "Basil Valentine" thought that obtaining copper from a vitriolic solution by inserting iron in it was an actual "transmutation" of iron into copper. Yet "puffers" like Raphael Eglinus or the anonymous author of the "Short Discourse" on the transmutation of metals knew very well it was just a simple precipitation of the copper already present in the vitriol solution. Things are not always as clear-cut as one might think.

Seth-Ra
03-08-2014, 05:24 AM
You seem confused by your own statements. Here is what you said:

"I can say the same thing about transmutation. It is a fact. Period. It has been proven over and over again - not just by alchemists. It happens even now within each of our bodies, it happens in the earth, in the sun, etc etc."

So where is the proof that the "transmutation inside each of our bodies" is happening? Of course I was not referring to the sun or spontaneous decay of radioactive substances, since these are well known and documented. I was only referring to your particular claim as if it was a "proven" thing, which you lumped with those that have actually been proven to exist.

Not confused, you were just being vague with your question. ^.~



That happens inside radioactive materials only, which are basically natural "reactors" on their own, no need of outside help. It does not happen in stable substances. So you are still wrong.

Not quite.


A nuclear reactor is a device to initiate and control a sustained nuclear chain reaction.


"Nuclear reaction" is a term implying an induced change in a nuclide, and thus it does not apply to any type of radioactive decay (which by definition is a spontaneous process).


Perhaps the most notable nuclear reactions are the nuclear chain reactions in fissionable materials that produces induced nuclear fission, and the various nuclear fusion reactions of light elements that power the energy production of the Sun and stars.

So, reactors such as stars, and made-man ones, does not = radioactive decay, which can also cause transmutation, proving it (transmutation) exists outside of reactors. :cool:


That remains a controversial subject, yet to be proven without any doubt. Modern chemistry still does not accept these alleged transmutations.

Again, modern chemistry's accepted views are the only views youre allowing as "proof" even when other modern scientists challenge those views. (it was commonly accepted at one point in time that the earth was flat, how silly.)


Again, these are just uncorroborated claims. Anyone can make these. They are a dime a dozen. The world has always been full of people making such claims. Proving that such things actually exist and anyone can achieve them is a whole different deal.

People since the beginning of recorded history have spoken of (and many have and still do experience) the spiritual realms, or other dimensions etc - scientists are beginning to mathematically support their existence (other dimensions), and your still not happy with it. Argumentative.



For me and for anyone, including you.

That (whats underlined) is an unverified assumption you make there. :)



Interpretations of vague or obscure passages are totally arbitrary until actually proven to be effective.

Just because it appears arbitrary to you, doesnt mean it is. That is your interpretation.


Have you really confected a powder that transmutes many times its own weight of base metal into silver or gold? Somehow I think you will say "yes", but somehow I can also predict that you will always find 1001 excuses not to prove that you really have it.

Depends on what you call "proving it."



How do I know this? Plenty of personal experience with such boasts, plus the accumulated experience of others throughout the centuries.

So, "accumulated experience of others throughout the centuries" is only valid when speaking negatively of others, but not for experiencing higher realms of consciousness? How quaint.


People like Michael Maier, Heinrich Khunrath, Gabriel Plattes, Richard Stanihurst, etc. even wrote texts devoted to how to spot charlatans, cheats or those making empty boasts regarding possession of the Stone. One of the obvious signs of someone who simply could not put his money where his mouth is was the reluctance of the claimant to submit a sample of his alleged "Stone" for testing. This was always seen as a sign of dishonesty on the claimant's part, someone who did not really have what he claimed he had, and it doesn't need to be explained why this is such a clear and blatant sign. Needless to say, the same sound logic and common sense of those older writers applies today. "The proof is in the pudding", as the popular saying goes.

I agree that the proof is in the pudding, per se. Depending on the person and the test, i can/have sent my work out and gotten positive results (mine were sent out in liquid form for medicinal testing, all positive with drastic results - not that i expect you to believe any of that, but it happened regardless.)



Then I am afraid that you will be disappointed by the bulk of the literature actually being written by such "puffers". Even occultists like A.E. Waite already noticed that most alchemical literature is concerned with pretty much little else other than making the Philosophers' Stone and applying it to transmutation and medicinal/longevity purposes.

The majority of literature is useless to me. I like to do what Paracelsus advocated - spent time in, and observe Nature itself. I live in the country, so its practical for me to do so. Im not concerned with literature and books, im to busy doing. :)



Again, these are just your claims, which as far as I can tell you have never proven to any panel of impartial and trustworthy witnesses. Anyone can make such claims of being able to understand things others do not. Actually proving them is a whole different story.

"As far as you can tell", is the key.



Actually even the alchemists themselves often complain about the obscure, vague, and even sometimes contradictory language employed in the subject and how arbitrary it can be from one author to another, or even from one author's book to the next! There were no set of established "rules" for assigning arbitrary names to substances, so basically "anything goes" according to the fancy of each writer.

Actually, there is a method to the supposed madness, not that you'll agree cause you cant see it, but nevertheless, just cause its arbitrary to you, doesnt mean it is, or that its obscure for everyone.


In fact, the heavy use of this tactic once again betrays the claim of some boasting alchemists who say that they could indeed write the whole process for the Stone in plain language -no symbols, no code-words, no obscurities, no vagueness, just plain language that could be followed by anyone- and still without an alleged "Divine permission" the seeker would still fail. Of course, the fact that not a single one of them put his money where his mouth was in this regard only shows that they did not really believe such claims. In fact, often the alchemists who make such a boast are in fact among the obscurest writers themselves. Totally the opposite of what one would expect if they really believed what they claimed about some supernatural "permission" arbitrarily determining who is "worthy" of succeeding being necessary.

Disregard texts you dont like - you do with everything else. ^.^


No, not at all, I have found your posts quite "dumbed" enough as they are, no need to bring them down from your normal level ;)

Lol that was cute. ;)


Again, purely arbitrary and subjective human concepts attributed to things ("spirits", mysterious "frequencies/energies", "Primal Essences", "Quintessence", etc.) no one has ever proved that they even exist in the first place. Your whole line of argumentation relies on these assumptions about things you yourself can't even prove they exist. You are basing them on your personal beliefs and convictions, which may or may not be exactly those of any other random person. Purely arbitrary and subjective stuff.

Actually, i based it on a simple math problem, stating there is an Order to it all. You thinking its arbitrary is your opinion, and if you think that the math-concept/logic is man-made, then i suggest you re-evaluate how Nature works/forms (laws of harmonics/frequency resonance, golden ratio formations etc etc etc.)




There is a big difference between what a human cop or judge can do, and a "Divine" one that you won't be able to escape somewhere He/It can't reach you. Crooks in the real world know they have a good chance of getting away with crime, that's what motivates them.

That is a broad and sweeping statement that that is what motivates (all?) them...


They are willing to risk it if they know they have a chance of getting away with it. Rest assured that if they knew that all their crimes would end up in certain punishment, no matter what they did to try to avoid it, they would quite surely start getting into other "professions" where they would know that the only outcome is not going to be them on the losing side for sure.

For those of them who dont want to believe it, or dont give a shit about it, "will cross that bridge when we come to it", no amount of priests or scientists, or alchemists are going to convince them. People who experience whats to come, often do change things in their lives, atleast for a little while. But in the end, proof is subjective until the inevitable is experienced/realized.


People aren't that stupid and self-destructive. Give them some credit.

lol You'd like to think that, wouldnt you? :rolleyes:



And who says that "someone" does not want it to be proven? Once again, making assumptions about what others think or want to think. The fact remains that no one has proven any of that stuff. It remains just the variable personal convictions and beliefs of each individual.

One who wants proof will find it, one who doesnt, will not. Materialists want proof for their materialism, so they pursue chemistry and physics. Spiritualists want proof of the spirit, so they pursue religion and metaphysics. Alchemists want proof and harmony of both, so they tend to pursue it all, to varying degrees.

Things that objectively are, exist without your need or desire for subjective proof. Just because a person cannot see or tap into whats there, consciously at least, doesnt mean that it isnt there.



The empirical facts remain, it is the theories/speculations regarding them that can change and vary. This is not "strange" at all. Anyone can observe a fire or gravity at work and plainly see how real they are, but trying to "explain" why things are or how they work is a much more complicated matter that involves abstract thought. Lots of things can go wrong or right in this process. Yet the empirical fact being "explained" will remain the same. The gravity and fire we can plainly perceive today are the exact same ones that some people in centuries past perceived themselves and tried to attribute to the "earth element" being "heavier" than the "air element", or to a "sulphurous" principle supposedly escaping certain materials when they get heated. Yet to us such "explanations" seem quite incorrect and based on mistaken theoretical assumptions. We have other ways of "explaining" them which seem much more logical and based on other more "sound" theoretical assumptions. Apply all this to the Stone (if we take it for granted that it does indeed exist, for argument's sake) and the alchemists' claims of how it is achieved.

For the sake of discussion - they "proved" their ideas by making the fire each time. We "prove" ours, by making the fire each time. A thousand years from now i wonder how "silly" our explanations will have looked to those people, who will "prove" theirs by making a fire...

The "fire" in this case, is physical transmutation. We know it exists, it is proven. The Principles of alchemy are proven thusly - things change and transform into one another.

As for the higher realms and their fire...

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f1/EM_spectrum.svg

The point being one of Principle; just because you (or another) cant see it, doesnt mean it isnt there. Just because they havent built devices to detect it (yet?) doesnt mean it isnt there. My point (again) is for you to not try and invalidate such.


Well, I think you know very well that it is not the substance of the crystal ball itself that is being questioned here, but what some claim they can do with it ;)

Indeed. The point being, that to use either, requires a level of sight and/or hearing. Hence why its valid. See above point also.


This is equivalent to me saying: "that claim I told you about me being able to project my mind to the 4 corners of the Universe in an instant and seeing what is going on anywhere as if I was watching TV has been witnessed by all my friends and people around me..." And the "proof" of this other claim is where??? It still remains as unproven as always. Adding more claims to another unproven claim is not "proof" either.

Unproven to you. Im sorry you dont run in my RL circle. Maybe one of them will chime in - but im sure you'd still disregard it, since we dont walk around and live life with our cameras and specialized scanning equipment always going. ;)



Well, it seems to me that "Jedis" don't shy away from proving their claims as very much real. Darth Vader himself almost choked a guy who was poking fun at his belief in the "Force" from across the room without actually touching him. I saw this with my very own eyes. Of course, it needs to be said that it was at the movies on the silver screen, where anything can happen.

That was a joke. :)
But, again it seems to be one of those things where you would "have to be here." ;)
(like the guy was who got force-choked.)



Yes, but such accounts are not proven either. They remain just that: anecdotal accounts. What I mean is definitive, irrefutable proof that such "spiritual encounters" exist. That would most certainly have a huge impact on the world and society.

These things have been around since humans were scrimbling arrows on clay, yet nothing has changed. People have experienced spiritual encounters, and have helped to instruct others on how to do so also, and still a blind eye is turned. It still goes on, in the age of high speed internet, iPhones, and insane robots in space sending back awesome high-def, full res and color photos... and still a blind eye is turned to what goes on within.

You can say its all subjective and arbitrary (and that is your subjective opinion), but the fact is, people have experienced such since records existed, and still do, so either its a fact, or all those people are liars and frauds.
(ya know, like how they said "alchemists are liars and frauds, elements are static and dont change into one another." - and then later they discovered nuclear transmutation, though they never recant their bashing off the alchemists... pride and shit)

____

I cease the quoting here, cause a lot of it is semantic shit, and i have no interest in defending Basil or whatever.

You mention the "burden of proof" - what youre failing to understand, is that there isnt such. Proof, to you, is what you say it is - its for you, and others like you. Proof is subjective, not objective. Proof requires an idea of the how, not the what. Im pointing out the thing itself - the validity of both physical and spiritual/mental. Neither of them needs "proof" - they are. You can say the physical proves itself - look around. I can say the same thing about the spiritual/mental. Its relative.

To quote Markos:


Non-dualistically speaking, the division of subjectivity and objectivity is illusory, and even from a dualistic perspective, the differentiation is permeable at best. ... As to empiricism, the idea of some theoretically pure objectivity, is strictly 19th century thinking.

For discussions sake, i will say one last thing on this (in this post):

If the "spiritual" is, at the very least, something mental - it still exists. "Proof" is in the thought - which is a neuron(s) firing energy within the brain, energy = matter (E=Mc2), not that energy itself doesnt = existence, but, thank you anyway Einstein; proof of the existence of the thing (spiritual experience/reality): a frequency/energy of higher (deeper, even if literally internal) thought/existence.

What you perceive to be objective reality, is a dream being dreamed, live - as are the others when we glimpse them. Thus, my original, and only real point/goal that ive been saying since i chimed in to begin with; don't invalidate the thing, just because you can't/don't see or experience it.


Besides, just some food for thought - if you're only gonna go with what is "accepted/proven" by science, then why are you attempting alchemy - which is "accepted/proven" to be a "disproven pseudoscience/proto-chemistry". ;)





~Seth-Ra

Hellin Hermetist
03-08-2014, 03:09 PM
Not plainly enough, specially not regarding the initial materials to work with, their most carefully guarded secret.

But you know that there are manuscripts out there that speak quite plainly about the initial materials, and we can see from them that every alchemist (or school of alchemists) followed a different schedule. So we can see that some of them speak about corrosive sublimate, others about liquid mercury distilled over starry martian antimonial regulus, others about Hungarian vitriol, or niter, or galena, or this or that...and at the end all those authors say that they got a heavy, red, crystalline substance, able to transumte many times its weight of non precious metals to gold. So we have two options. We can work with many substances and follow many different paths or most of the authors were impostrors.

Illen A. Cluf
03-08-2014, 03:54 PM
But you know that there are manuscripts out there that speak quite plainly about the initial materials, and we can see from them that every alchemist (or school of alchemists) followed a different schedule. So we can see that some of them speak about corrosive sublimate, others about liquid mercury distilled over starry martian antimonial regulus, others about Hungarian vitriol, or niter, or galena, or this or that...and at the end all those authors say that they got a heavy, red, crystalline substance, able to transumte many times its weight of non precious metals to gold. So we have two options. We can work with many substances and follow many different paths or most of the authors were impostrors.

There is a third option worthy of consideration. And that is the possibility that there are several paths, using different starting matters, and practical methods, that all lead to the very same prima materia, from which the rest of the process is the same for all paths, leading to the red (for gold ferment) crystallized powder. If this consideration is realized, a lot of the discrepancies between the various approaches are greatly reduced.

Hellin Hermetist
03-08-2014, 04:08 PM
Isnt your third option exactly the same with the first one I mentioned?

Illen A. Cluf
03-08-2014, 04:23 PM
Isnt your third option exactly the same with the first one I mentioned?

There is a subtle difference not often mentioned. Many assume that each of the paths are totally different (although all leading to the same end product), and thus they try to discredit one approach over another, or run into all sorts of discrepancies trying to compare one approach with another. There is also the endless debate about the first matters that are used and the "prima materia". In my opinion, the two are not the same. So what I'm saying, is that it's possible that many of the different approaches are all legitimate, and all lead to the very same prima materia. It's at this point that most authors begin their treatises.

Few of them mention the initial preparation that leads to the starting matter that they refer to as the prima materia. Thus many assume that the prima materia that they are talking about is actually the matter(s) used in the preparation, whether it's antimony, lead, or whatever. This is what possibly leads to such confusion, and the reason why much of the practice constantly fails to produce the observations mentioned by the Philosophers.

Thus the subtle - but huge - difference in the options. One option assumes that all the approaches are different throughout, but eventually lead to the very same Stone. The other option that I mention, is that all the approaches are initially different during the preparation stage only, but which all lead to the same prima materia, and that the rest of the approach (the one from which most authors start) is identical for each.

Thus you can see the huge significance of the subtlety.

Krisztian
03-08-2014, 04:36 PM
It would seem, there're many, many prima materia. Each materia can be evolved by two or three, at least, approaches by the grace of Nature. All basically following the colour scheme alchemy came to be popularized with.

One must ask however, look at all the minds here [on this Forum], historically all the intellectual minds of 20th Century, in and out of academia, logicians, some of the sharpest minds looking for it, left empty handed in almost all cases? Why?

For me, either the Philosopher's Stone is a fable, a fraud, no thing like it in existence or, alchemy is not entirely about manipulation of matter, chemistry at large.

JDP
03-08-2014, 05:51 PM
Not confused, you were just being vague with your question. ^.~

Since I myself had mentioned things like the sun obviously that is not what was meant by that question. You know very well which of the mentioned things I must have been asking about, the only one that comes straight from your claims, not facts that have been accepted by most people.


So, reactors such as stars, and made-man ones, does not = radioactive decay, which can also cause transmutation, proving it (transmutation) exists outside of reactors. :cool:

Now you are the one indulging in semantics, which you claim you don't like. The fact is that radioactive materials are self-sufficient, they do not rely on any outside force/energy to undergo such transmutations, so in a sense they act like a sort of "reactor" on their very own. Their own unstable internal structure allows them to undergo such changes. This is different from stable materials, though. The reason why chemists and physicists still refuse to accept transmutation in the "alchemical" sense is because they have never been presented with evidence that it can happen by making stable substances react with one another. So your objection further below about them not wanting to recognize that they were wrong because the discovery of radioactivity is not quite valid. They did change their opinion after such a discovery, they no longer denied that one "element" could be turned into another, but only for radioactive materials. They still have to see evidence that such transmutations can happen using "elements" that are stable and never decay on their own.


Again, modern chemistry's accepted views are the only views youre allowing as "proof" even when other modern scientists challenge those views. (it was commonly accepted at one point in time that the earth was flat, how silly.)

If one wants to prove his claims, then one will have to tackle with scientists and their views, which are based on empirical evidence, there is no other way around it. So as long as one does not confront them and prove one's point with facts they can't deny or explain with other evidence, rational thinking people are simply always going to regard one's claims as unproven. Sorry, I don't make the "rules", but that's the way it is.


People since the beginning of recorded history have spoken of (and many have and still do experience) the spiritual realms, or other dimensions etc - scientists are beginning to mathematically support their existence (other dimensions), and your still not happy with it. Argumentative.

Since the beginning of recorded history there's also been charlatans, boasters, liars, deceivers, dreamers, delusions, mistakes, etc. That's why science can't rely solely on someone's "word". It needs facts that can be replicated by anyone.



That (whats underlined) is an unverified assumption you make there. :)

But one based on common sense and logic. Otherwise you would not have so much trouble proving your claims :)



Just because it appears arbitrary to you, doesnt mean it is. That is your interpretation.

No, everyone's interpretation is, and it remains so until someone can prove that his interpretation does work and produces the results described in the texts.


Depends on what you call "proving it."

In this case it is pretty easy, and we have plenty of historical accounts of how this was done by "adepts" wanting to prove the reality of their claims: submitting a sample of the alleged transmuting "Stone" to be tested by someone else, specially one who is skeptic of such a possibility. Only in our modern times it would not be given to just an individual, but an actual panel of chemists and physicists who would test it.



So, "accumulated experience of others throughout the centuries" is only valid when speaking negatively of others, but not for experiencing higher realms of consciousness? How quaint.

Common sense and logic are as valid today as they were in past times. If someone tells you that he can fly by flapping his arms, you obviously will request proof of such an extraordinary claim. Why would you suspect that he can't really do that? Well, common sense and your own experience tells you that such a thing is highly unlikely. If the person making the claim keeps giving excuses not to do that in front of reliable impartial witnesses (i.e. not his confederates, who will just claim they've seen him do that just to continue the farce) then obviously he has something to hide and can't really do what he claims.


I agree that the proof is in the pudding, per se. Depending on the person and the test, i can/have sent my work out and gotten positive results (mine were sent out in liquid form for medicinal testing, all positive with drastic results - not that i expect you to believe any of that, but it happened regardless.)

Achieving positive medicinal results is perfectly possible, in fact you don't need to have stumbled upon anything really "alchemical" to do that. Chemistry and medicine have achieved plenty of that on their own. You could simply have stumbled upon an interesting compound that has valid therapeutic properties. Nothing remotely "impossible" here. The problem comes with the issue of transmutation, which is one that requires proof to be finally "officially" accepted.


The majority of literature is useless to me. I like to do what Paracelsus advocated - spent time in, and observe Nature itself. I live in the country, so its practical for me to do so. Im not concerned with literature and books, im to busy doing. :)

You seem to have an ahistorical approach to alchemy.



"As far as you can tell", is the key.

Yes, but it's a very educated guess, considering that I have seen you around these forums for quite a while but I have never seen you refer to any scientist who has put your claims to the test and become convinced of them. I think that if you really had done that, you would be mentioning it quite often in support of your claims. It never hurts to have support from an independent source.


Actually, there is a method to the supposed madness, not that you'll agree cause you cant see it, but nevertheless, just cause its arbitrary to you, doesnt mean it is, or that its obscure for everyone.

Again, that's not even what the alchemists themselves say. They themselves often struggled to interpret what was hiding behind such language. They say the "sages" who wrote so obscurely did it out of jealousy or spite, so that very few people could decipher what they really meant by such things. Entire treatises (some of them very interesting, like those of Ibn Umail) are devoted to clarify and give explanations to these not-so-clear statements in alchemical literature.


Disregard texts you dont like - you do with everything else. ^.^

I don't disregard them, I just point out the inconsistencies between the claims of such authors and their actual behavior. They are classic cases of not "practicing what you preach".


Actually, i based it on a simple math problem, stating there is an Order to it all. You thinking its arbitrary is your opinion, and if you think that the math-concept/logic is man-made, then i suggest you re-evaluate how Nature works/forms (laws of harmonics/frequency resonance, golden ratio formations etc etc etc.)

Comparing 2 + 2 = 4 to the alleged reality of the things you claim is quite a stretch. To claim that things like "worthy" and "unworthy" are the same as the tenets of basic math is silly. "Worthiness" is a subjective concept, variable for each individual.



That is a broad and sweeping statement that that is what motivates (all?) them...

Does it look to you that after they commit their crimes they head straight to jail all on their own? Why not? Do you seriously think that they would commit those crimes in the first place if they knew for sure that they would be apprehended and punished, no matter what they tried to do to avoid it?


For those of them who dont want to believe it, or dont give a shit about it, "will cross that bridge when we come to it", no amount of priests or scientists, or alchemists are going to convince them. People who experience whats to come, often do change things in their lives, atleast for a little while. But in the end, proof is subjective until the inevitable is experienced/realized.

Proof is not subjective. It can be replicated by anyone.


lol You'd like to think that, wouldnt you? :rolleyes:

Show them irrefutable proof of the things you claim and see if they continue their behavior. My money says that 99% of them won't. Only a few mentally deficient ones incapable of understanding the consequences of their actions will continue as before. Proving your "spiritual" claims to such people is not much different than showing an unaware race car driver that if he keeps going at breakneck speed down this particular highway he will eventually come to an abrupt precipice that won't allow him enough time to stop and he will fall down to his sure death. 99% of them will change highways. Why? Because most people are not naturally suicidal, that's why.


One who wants proof will find it, one who doesnt, will not. Materialists want proof for their materialism, so they pursue chemistry and physics. Spiritualists want proof of the spirit, so they pursue religion and metaphysics. Alchemists want proof and harmony of both, so they tend to pursue it all, to varying degrees.

Not true. Many people would love to show that Bigfoot exists, yet they can't find the irrefutable proof they so much desire (and not for lack of trying, BTW. There is even a TV show offering 10 million dollars for proof that it exists! I guess the producers must be pretty confident that they won't be losing any money anytime soon.) There are countless of such examples. Wanting proof and actually being able to find it are two different things. One does not always accompany the other.


Things that objectively are, exist without your need or desire for subjective proof. Just because a person cannot see or tap into whats there, consciously at least, doesnt mean that it isnt there.

You got it backwards: proof is objective; unsubstantiated claims are not.


For the sake of discussion - they "proved" their ideas by making the fire each time. We "prove" ours, by making the fire each time. A thousand years from now i wonder how "silly" our explanations will have looked to those people, who will "prove" theirs by making a fire...

Like I said, it's the theories that might change, but the not the facts those theories seek to explain. Our ancestors having flawed theories regarding fire still did not stop them one bit from discovering and knowing how to make it. "Correct" theories and facts do not always go hand in hand.

Also, we can prove that their theories about combustion had flaws that do not fit all the facts. Our current theories (originating in Lavoisierian chemistry) about it so far have not been shown to have flaws, therefore they have not changed... yet (they might change if someone eventually can find some facts that contradict our current theories about it.)



The "fire" in this case, is physical transmutation. We know it exists, it is proven. The Principles of alchemy are proven thusly - things change and transform into one another.

You seem to have a very loose concept of "physical transmutation". It seems that to you it is just "change". But there's many types of "changes". The changes we are talking about here are regarding metals, which are now considered "elements" because no modern chemist so far has been able to decompose them into any simpler substances, the claims of alchemists and chymists of past centuries to the contrary notwithstanding, according to modern chemistry and physics. This is the kind of "change" that chemistry and physics denies can happen simply by "chemical reactions" (by this phrase they include all reactions between stable, non-radioactive, substances), unless of course someone can prove otherwise.


The point being one of Principle; just because you (or another) cant see it, doesnt mean it isnt there. Just because they havent built devices to detect it (yet?) doesnt mean it isnt there. My point (again) is for you to not try and invalidate such.

In order to invalidate something one must first try to prove that that "something" even exists. So far the world is still waiting for alleged proof of gazing into "crystal balls", "spiritual encounters" and so forth.


Indeed. The point being, that to use either, requires a level of sight and/or hearing. Hence why its valid. See above point also.

Then you should be able to prove it that you have such "level of sight and/or hearing". Until such proof is forthcoming, the claim remains just that: an uncorroborated claim.



Unproven to you. Im sorry you dont run in my RL circle. Maybe one of them will chime in - but im sure you'd still disregard it, since we dont walk around and live life with our cameras and specialized scanning equipment always going. ;)

To me and to the rest of the world (except your "RL circle", whoever they may be.)


These things have been around since humans were scrimbling arrows on clay, yet nothing has changed. People have experienced spiritual encounters, and have helped to instruct others on how to do so also, and still a blind eye is turned. It still goes on, in the age of high speed internet, iPhones, and insane robots in space sending back awesome high-def, full res and color photos... and still a blind eye is turned to what goes on within.

Yes, but so have the claims of throngs of charlatans, deceivers, liars, manipulators, crooks, frauds, delusional people, etc. That's why proof is required.


You mention the "burden of proof" - what youre failing to understand, is that there isnt such. Proof, to you, is what you say it is - its for you, and others like you. Proof is subjective, not objective. Proof requires an idea of the how, not the what. Im pointing out the thing itself - the validity of both physical and spiritual/mental. Neither of them needs "proof" - they are. You can say the physical proves itself - look around. I can say the same thing about the spiritual/mental. Its relative.

No, you fail to understand that proof is very real and not "subjective". It's something that can be checked and replicated by others. For example: no one in his right mind will deny that if I strongly swing a hammer and hit you in any of your fingers resting on a solid surface with it it will hurt you from the trauma. That is a fact, and we can prove it anytime you want to. And it doesn't have to necessarily be me swinging the hammer at your fingers either, by the way. The same results can be replicated by another grown up man in full use of his physical abilities. Would you like to put this assertion to the test? Bring the hammer and a couple of grown ups and we will test it anytime you want to ;) There is nothing "subjective" here. You know very well what the outcome will always be. That's proof.


What you perceive to be objective reality, is a dream being dreamed, live - as are the others when we glimpse them. Thus, my original, and only real point/goal that ive been saying since i chimed in to begin with; don't invalidate the thing, just because you can't/don't see or experience it.

Bring the hammer, the couple of grown ups, a table and your fingers and we will see what is "a dream being dreamed" and what is "objective reality". Methinks that you would quickly acknowledge what is "real" and what isn't, even before the "test" started :D Jokes aside, the point is that you know very well what I am saying, you just don't want to acknowledge it because deep inside you know you can't prove any of such claims.


Besides, just some food for thought - if you're only gonna go with what is "accepted/proven" by science, then why are you attempting alchemy - which is "accepted/proven" to be a "disproven pseudoscience/proto-chemistry". ;)

Because as I pointed out earlier when I was making the first comment about what the author of that book said, this denial is by itself a bold assertion based on current theories about matter, not on a systematic testing of alchemical claims, which I have never seen in the work of any chemist. However, I don't see any reason why "supernatural" things should be conjured up to try to explain the possibility that alchemy might have discovered things that chemistry has not.

JDP
03-08-2014, 06:39 PM
But you know that there are manuscripts out there that speak quite plainly about the initial materials, and we can see from them that every alchemist (or school of alchemists) followed a different schedule. So we can see that some of them speak about corrosive sublimate, others about liquid mercury distilled over starry martian antimonial regulus, others about Hungarian vitriol, or niter, or galena, or this or that...and at the end all those authors say that they got a heavy, red, crystalline substance, able to transumte many times its weight of non precious metals to gold. So we have two options. We can work with many substances and follow many different paths or most of the authors were impostrors.

The texts that usually speak clearly enough to be easily followed are rather by "chymists" than "alchemists", and they usually involve "particular" processes, not the Philosophers' Stone. Very rarely you will find texts that can be fully deemed as "alchemical" describing the matters to be used in an apparently totally clear manner.

Even in some of your examples we can see this difference. You mentioned the claim about mercury being distilled from an amalgam with "Martial regulus" of antimony. This claim made its debut in the work on antimony by Alexander von Suchten, who never said that such mercury can be used to make the Philosophers' Stone. He was talking about making artificial metals "directly" with that mercury, no need for preparing any "tincture". He ended up rejecting such methods as ineffective. Then Starkey took over this idea, but gave it his own "spin": unlike Suchten, he claimed that the Philosophers' Stone was made with this mercury (of course, his surviving lab notebooks show that he kept failing to do so over and over again, a very different picture than Starkey's public claims of success under his "Eirenaeus Philalethes" persona.) This claim was then subsequently tested by the likes of Boyle, Newton, Wilson, Boerhaave, etc. and none of them found any validity to it. No one managed to prepare any transmuting powder with such methods (incredibly enough, there's still some people in this day and age wasting time and money trying to make the Philosophers' Stone this way, despite all this overwhelming evidence of historical failures with this method.) So we know for a fact that in this case the whole thing was a series of unfortunate misunderstandings, lies and erroneous claims and assumptions that led many people to waste their time and money to achieve absolutely nothing.

So to answer your question: yes, most of the "clear" processes are erroneous or deliberate lies.

JDP
03-08-2014, 07:02 PM
But you know that there are manuscripts out there that speak quite plainly about the initial materials, and we can see from them that every alchemist (or school of alchemists) followed a different schedule. So we can see that some of them speak about corrosive sublimate, others about liquid mercury distilled over starry martian antimonial regulus, others about Hungarian vitriol, or niter, or galena, or this or that...and at the end all those authors say that they got a heavy, red, crystalline substance, able to transumte many times its weight of non precious metals to gold. So we have two options. We can work with many substances and follow many different paths or most of the authors were impostrors.

By the way, I have been meaning to ask you something, since you seem to be Greek: can you please confirm if any of the strange names found in the works attributed to "Salomon Trismosin" are indeed Greek or are they just gobbledygook that the author concocted to make it sound "Greek" to impress his readers? For example, the manuscript entitled "Sarlamethon" that he says his wealthy patron paid 6000 crowns for:

http://www.levity.com/alchemy/trismosn.html

Is this a real Greek word, or based on real Greek at all? There are other such strange "Greek-sounding" names and book titles like this in several texts attributed to the same author, like "Julaton", "Cangeniveron", "Suforeton", "Viatolon", "Geroton", "Nefolon", etc.

lwowl
03-08-2014, 07:25 PM
One of the Aspects of Alchemy these days certainly seems to be debating the validity of low energy transmutation of one periodic table element into another, and the notion of a separate Spiritual alchemy. Some appear to have given up on the one to embrace the other, and vice versa.

Then there is the perennial debate about the starting materials and the processing of them. Hypothesis have been crafted attempting to make sense of all the seemingly discordant instructions of the sages. Yet the adepts themselves only rage against, fools, the conceited and sophistical. And they readily agree with each other. Yet the terms they use to describe the things seem to be quite contradictory and should result in arguments between them. Instead especially with Ripley a concordance is illuminated between himself and the adepts Lully and Guido specifically.

It was because of Ripley's generosity that I discovered the one only thing over a decade ago. I'm still running experiments with it and on it. So far it reacts giving results that resemble the descriptions of the adepts.

When I first revealed a particular confection of that one only thing, Ripley's Philosophical Earth, I was attacked and ridiculed [not at this forum:-)]. The name of the material was spoofed by several deliberately misnaming it in a mocking manner. Yet a few took it to heart. At least two I know have repeated the process with similar results.

Before someone jumps to the assumption that I'm leaving out any notion of a spiritual element in this let me say that when you get to a certain point in the preparation of the matter the "astral spirit" in your vessel will influence you to see the light. Of course seeing the light in your mind is quite subjective. So is seeing the light in your mind induced by the Psilocybe fairy.

If you follow Ripley's advice then only one thing is to be operated upon. If any outside thing is added then you have erred. He is very kind to reveal the correct way to interpret the various and contradictory names of the matters and how to operate in his Philorcium, the book he put together for his own use where he describes the 24 different ways of working with the one only thing. They may appear to be different paths if one falls victim to the names used to describe the matters derived from the one only thing during the operations.

If one really studies the excerpt below from Ripley's Philorcium and takes it to heart then one may see the concordancy between the sages and errors of the sophist recipes.



Ripley's Philorcium

9 Chapter III
10 How error arising from the interpretation of
11 hard words may be avoided

12 My pity of the ignorance of the younger sort, whose necks
13 have not been as yet mollified with alchymical ointment
14 & having promised divers practises in this art I shall here
15 begin (for the more simple & naked verity) to expound the
16 signification of certain obscure words. You are therefore
17 to note that the philosophers have placed many & various
18 names in their works that they mought not be understood
19 by fools, & so their knowledge be made vile & that it
20 mought not be indifferently common to all, as well to
21 the unworthy as the worthy. But the philosophers themselves
22 have not so much minded the names as the truth of
23 the names, for by what name sooner our stone is nominated that
24 it is but one thing, which were it but known, it could
25 not be permitted to be so common as it is, as well to the

Page 9

1 poor as to the rich, nor would it ly in the streets to be trod on
2 by human feet. And that I may open unto thee this thing, know
3 by god that it is one of those things, which are of the seven days, & the
4 viler of them. Out of whose body blood is artificialy extrac-
5 ted, & a vaporous humour, which is called the blood of the green
6 lion, out of which is made a water which is called the white of an egg
7 & the water of life, of maydew, & by many other names, the
8 which to avoid prolixity we shall at present omit. But out
9 of the said water an earth is created, which is called sulphur
10 vive, the calx of the body of the sun & moon & of other bo-
11 dies, calcined eggshells, ceruse, saltpetre, arsenick & by
12 innumerable other names; And know that in that earth is a fire
13 & in that water is Air, & the earth putrefied with his own
14 water, until the 4 elements may be separated from them, if
15 the artist will copiously & without negligence proceed on in the
16 rule of distilling them. Yet it sufficeth for the complement
17 of the elixir to separate the water from the earth & to
18 deal with the earth by calcination, & to rectify the water by
19 circulation & again to conjoyne it as is permitted within
20 24 ways of practising: On which account: When thou hadest
21 a philosopher saying take this or that, always understand it
22 of this stone, or of the parts thereof separated, as if when he
23 sayth, take arsenick, understand the fire of the stone, for sul-
24 phur the air, oil & sometimes the fire, & for armoniack the
25 air; & for armoniack not dissolved the earth, & for mercury
Page 10

1 water, & sometimes mercury per se; now understand these things
2 & remember them. For mercury sublimate understand a water ex-
3 alted with his own calx, which must be congealed into salt, the which
4 is called salpetre & the sulphur of Bacon, the which congeales every
5 argent vive, because it is not the sulphur of the vulgar. Therefore
6 as often as at any time thou findest in any philosophical work
7 thus written in their recipes take mercury, beware of the
8 argent vive of the vulgar; where they mencion sulphur & arse-
9 nick, beware of common sulphur & arsenick, either prepared
10 or not prepared, where of saturn beware of vermilion,
11 where the green lion beware of vitriol & copper, where
12 sol beware of gold, where the lune there beware of common
13 silver. In ablution beware of salts, & all corrosiv waters
14 not metallick. In sublimations beware that thou mix no ex-
15 traneous thing with the stone, in distillation beware that thou
16 receive no drops; in calcination see that thou extract no
17 moisture: in projection see that thou eat not of a thing unclean:
18 In thy work, shut thy vessel once what one is more
19 is of evil. Beware that thou inmitt not thy stone into an heap
20 of mercury the which Solomon reproved in the book of proverbs,
21 for the stone is one, hid under innumerable names, the work one,
22 the regiment one, the medicin one manifoldly varied, the which
23 if thou hast, see that thou sell it not, but operate in a secret
24 place that it may not come to any ones knowledge, least perhaps
25 thou beest scandalized, & suffer judgment from men & revenge

Page 11

1 from god;

Hellin Hermetist
03-08-2014, 07:43 PM
By the way, I have been meaning to ask you something, since you seem to be Greek: can you please confirm if any of the strange names found in the works attributed to "Salomon Trismosin" are indeed Greek or are they just gobbledygook that the author concocted to make it sound "Greek" to impress his readers? For example, the manuscript entitled "Sarlamethon" that he says his wealthy patron paid 6000 crowns for:

http://www.levity.com/alchemy/trismosn.html

Is this a real Greek word, or based on real Greek at all? There are other such strange "Greek-sounding" names and book titles like this in several texts attributed to the same author, like "Julaton", "Cangeniveron", "Suforeton", "Viatolon", "Geroton", "Nefolon", etc.

No, those words aren't Greek ones, or at the best case they have a Latinised Greek word as their base. For example the word Julaton. The word July in Greek is Ιουλιός or Ioulios , which states both the month of the summer and a name. For example Julius Ceasar is Ιουλιος Καισαρας, which is Ioulios Kaisaras with Latin characters. But Julaton as a Greek word doesnt make any sense. Cangeniveron, Suforeton and Viatolon arent Greek words either. I cant even find some connection with any Greek word. Geroton may be connected with the word geros (γερος) which means an old man, but as a whole word isnt a Greek one either. Semblable the word nefolon can be connected with the Greek word νεφος (nefos), a cloud. But again the word nefos can not be connected with the syllabe -lon, so the word doesnt make any sense again.

The word sarlamethon seems to be a compound one from the words sarla and methon. Methon may comes from the Greek word μέθη (methi) which means both getting drunk and being in ecstasy. I dont think that sarla is a Greek word, but it may be one of the lost words of ancient Greek language. I can check it in the big dictionary of ancient Greece when I visit my parent's house.

Seth-Ra
03-09-2014, 08:02 AM
JDP,

Im going to make this (relatively) short because further discussing this with you is like talking to a wall.

I dont care for mindless semantics, the only reason i retaliated with some of my own is because you started that pissing-contest by ignoring the point of what was being said in favor of chasing those meaningless circles.

You make the same types of baseless claims (about others and their work who you havent experienced) that you claim to be against. You are being the equivalent to a flat-world person demanding "proof" that it isnt, without seeking out any or listening to the logic being presented, with the go-to line of "it is not accepted by mainstream science as fact", as if their acceptance of a thing makes it so.

By dismissing the very idea of a things existence, a thing that many, innumerable people have and do experience, is infact invalidating it, and you are calling/equating them all to liars and frauds, which is also a baseless and wide-sweeping claim.

You call this disregarding of things, and the unsubstantiated claim of its nonexistence, and all things similar, to be "common sense", while hypocritically attacking the "common sense" to not disregard the billions(+) of people who have and do witness and experience those things, to not call (or imply) them all frauds and liars.

You think your hammer-joke is a valid point - and while that particular extreme might be, on me, there are those who it would not effect, thus negating the "repeatability" of the results (cause they arent 100% repeatable, hence its subjectivity). Shaolin Monks for example, have a habit of breaking steel with their faces and not being bothered by it, or balancing on the tips of spears, against their bare flesh, without being impaled. Often a level of such mastery is reached by them that they dont even get marks from such - there is simply no reaction, or it doesnt last long.

Was watching a documentary once on various martial art styles. They took a visit to the temple and got some doses of the training. One of them (these were normal americans, history in the martial arts fields, both of them very science-y about it all) hurt his hand while trying to punch brick/block (hand was swollen and looking pretty bad). This old monk comes over, does some breathing and rubbing thing to his hand - and the inflammation and pain was gone and he resumed punching the shit out of the brick. They never explained that, they just ignored it in their science review of the art, and moved on. They were not so arrogant to disregard something they had no instruments to test, but experienced nonetheless. We are instruments - tune yourself accordingly.


In any event, while i have enjoyed our somewhat witty banter in the notes (i do have a sense of humor, and have no ill-feelings about any of it, and i did enjoy that hammer thing - seemed like something i would have said if i had wanted to argue that side of the coin ;) ), but im done with the conversation. Feel free to respond to this if you so desire. Im extending an agree to disagree to neutralize it. You wont hear/understand/meet me, and you may very well feel the same about me.
So, im calling it - im out. I have actual (realized) work to go do.

Later. :)





~Seth-Ra

JDP
03-09-2014, 03:43 PM
JDP,

Im going to make this (relatively) short because further discussing this with you is like talking to a wall.

I dont care for mindless semantics, the only reason i retaliated with some of my own is because you started that pissing-contest by ignoring the point of what was being said in favor of chasing those meaningless circles.

You make the same types of baseless claims (about others and their work who you havent experienced) that you claim to be against. You are being the equivalent to a flat-world person demanding "proof" that it isnt, without seeking out any or listening to the logic being presented, with the go-to line of "it is not accepted by mainstream science as fact", as if their acceptance of a thing makes it so.

By dismissing the very idea of a things existence, a thing that many, innumerable people have and do experience, is infact invalidating it, and you are calling/equating them all to liars and frauds, which is also a baseless and wide-sweeping claim.

You call this disregarding of things, and the unsubstantiated claim of its nonexistence, and all things similar, to be "common sense", while hypocritically attacking the "common sense" to not disregard the billions(+) of people who have and do witness and experience those things, to not call (or imply) them all frauds and liars.

You think your hammer-joke is a valid point - and while that particular extreme might be, on me, there are those who it would not effect, thus negating the "repeatability" of the results (cause they arent 100% repeatable, hence its subjectivity). Shaolin Monks for example, have a habit of breaking steel with their faces and not being bothered by it, or balancing on the tips of spears, against their bare flesh, without being impaled. Often a level of such mastery is reached by them that they dont even get marks from such - there is simply no reaction, or it doesnt last long.

Was watching a documentary once on various martial art styles. They took a visit to the temple and got some doses of the training. One of them (these were normal americans, history in the martial arts fields, both of them very science-y about it all) hurt his hand while trying to punch brick/block (hand was swollen and looking pretty bad). This old monk comes over, does some breathing and rubbing thing to his hand - and the inflammation and pain was gone and he resumed punching the shit out of the brick. They never explained that, they just ignored it in their science review of the art, and moved on. They were not so arrogant to disregard something they had no instruments to test, but experienced nonetheless. We are instruments - tune yourself accordingly.


In any event, while i have enjoyed our somewhat witty banter in the notes (i do have a sense of humor, and have no ill-feelings about any of it, and i did enjoy that hammer thing - seemed like something i would have said if i had wanted to argue that side of the coin ;) ), but im done with the conversation. Feel free to respond to this if you so desire. Im extending an agree to disagree to neutralize it. You wont hear/understand/meet me, and you may very well feel the same about me.
So, im calling it - im out. I have actual (realized) work to go do.

Later. :)





~Seth-Ra

Thanks for the brevity. I also feel like this argument, as fun as it was, is going nowhere because you simply won't accept the difference between a demonstrable fact and a theory/speculation/conjecture/belief.

The tricks of martial artists have been dealt with by other people. They can be explained through physics.

The hammer-test joke can be easily applied to any normal healthy person whose nervous system is working properly, it does not have to be you.

You need to adopt a more critical view of things. You simply can't go by the testimony of people alone. There are millions of delusional people, deliberate liars, frauds, charlatans, etc. and this has been so since a long time ago. That guy Randi and his foundation, for example, have been challenging such extraordinary claims for decades, and no one has been able to prove any of them. Everyone who has accepted his paranormal challenge has miserably failed to even pass the preliminary test. I think that should tell you something about most of the people who make such claims.

By the way, my hammer-test joke was based on an actual response given to a guy who contacted Randi's 1 million dollar paranormal challenge making the absurd claim that he was in possession of a stone that allowed him to be invincible and would not get hurt by anything as long as he had the stone with him. The response he was given was simply: bring your stone and a baseball bat. Needless to say, the claimant was never heard from again... I guess that the faith he had in his miraculous stone of invincibility was not as firm as he thought. If you bother to read about the delusional claims that Randi's foundation has been dealing with for decades, you will understand why you simply can't trust anyone's word without any actual proof to back it up. And the majority of the people who contact them 100% believe what they are saying, they are not "jokers". A lot of them even apply for the challenge, fill up the application, and honestly try to prove their claims in front of panels of qualified people. Needless to say, every single one of them fails. It doesn't matter if it's dowsers, astrologers, psychics, mind-readers, remote-viewers, UFO abductees, spoon-benders, etc. They all fail. And by the way, the tests are deviced with and pending the final agreement of the applicant himself/herself, meaning that if he/she has any valid objections about any feature of the test, he/she can point it out and a solution is worked out between the foundation and the applicant, until a final agreement is reached by both parties for a test that would undoubtedly show the claim to be true. That way there can't be any excuses about "unfairness" on either side. They still all fail, even with tests they fully agree are fair and would show the veracity of their claims.

JDP
03-09-2014, 04:07 PM
One of the Aspects of Alchemy these days certainly seems to be debating the validity of low energy transmutation of one periodic table element into another, and the notion of a separate Spiritual alchemy. Some appear to have given up on the one to embrace the other, and vice versa.

Then there is the perennial debate about the starting materials and the processing of them. Hypothesis have been crafted attempting to make sense of all the seemingly discordant instructions of the sages. Yet the adepts themselves only rage against, fools, the conceited and sophistical. And they readily agree with each other. Yet the terms they use to describe the things seem to be quite contradictory and should result in arguments between them. Instead especially with Ripley a concordance is illuminated between himself and the adepts Lully and Guido specifically.

It was because of Ripley's generosity that I discovered the one only thing over a decade ago. I'm still running experiments with it and on it. So far it reacts giving results that resemble the descriptions of the adepts.

When I first revealed a particular confection of that one only thing, Ripley's Philosophical Earth, I was attacked and ridiculed [not at this forum:-)]. The name of the material was spoofed by several deliberately misnaming it in a mocking manner. Yet a few took it to heart. At least two I know have repeated the process with similar results.

Before someone jumps to the assumption that I'm leaving out any notion of a spiritual element in this let me say that when you get to a certain point in the preparation of the matter the "astral spirit" in your vessel will influence you to see the light. Of course seeing the light in your mind is quite subjective. So is seeing the light in your mind induced by the Psilocybe fairy.

If you follow Ripley's advice then only one thing is to be operated upon. If any outside thing is added then you have erred. He is very kind to reveal the correct way to interpret the various and contradictory names of the matters and how to operate in his Philorcium, the book he put together for his own use where he describes the 24 different ways of working with the one only thing. They may appear to be different paths if one falls victim to the names used to describe the matters derived from the one only thing during the operations.

If one really studies the excerpt below from Ripley's Philorcium and takes it to heart then one may see the concordancy between the sages and errors of the sophist recipes.

I must disagree. Even though it is an interesting text, it does not reveal anything clear about what substance is being really meant. Plus if you read other works by Ripley you will see that he himself says or implies that the Stone is actually made from more than just one single simple matter (in his "Liber Secretissimus", for example, he uses the code-word "Antimony" for the substance to be worked on, and he clearly says that it is not the natural antimony but a composite substance, made by the alchemist himself from the interaction between three initial substances, which he does not clearly explain what they are.) This whole "one matter, one vessel, one regimen" adage that many alchemists keep repeating is nothing but a death-trap when taken so literally. There isn't any single simple material in the world that will do the things they describe.

By the way, I was in fact one of the people who transcribed that English version of the "Philorcium" from a manuscript in the British Library that contains a collection of Ripley's texts in English (this happened at the now defunct "Alkahest" forum of Beat Krummenacher and Frank Burton.)

JDP
03-09-2014, 04:13 PM
No, those words aren't Greek ones, or at the best case they have a Latinised Greek word as their base. For example the word Julaton. The word July in Greek is Ιουλιός or Ioulios , which states both the month of the summer and a name. For example Julius Ceasar is Ιουλιος Καισαρας, which is Ioulios Kaisaras with Latin characters. But Julaton as a Greek word doesnt make any sense. Cangeniveron, Suforeton and Viatolon arent Greek words either. I cant even find some connection with any Greek word. Geroton may be connected with the word geros (γερος) which means an old man, but as a whole word isnt a Greek one either. Semblable the word nefolon can be connected with the Greek word νεφος (nefos), a cloud. But again the word nefos can not be connected with the syllabe -lon, so the word doesnt make any sense again.

The word sarlamethon seems to be a compound one from the words sarla and methon. Methon may comes from the Greek word μέθη (methi) which means both getting drunk and being in ecstasy. I dont think that sarla is a Greek word, but it may be one of the lost words of ancient Greek language. I can check it in the big dictionary of ancient Greece when I visit my parent's house.

Thanks for clarifying this. So most of these strange names and book titles referred to in Trismosin's texts seem to just be claptrap that does not have a real basis in Greek.

I await your further research on what "sarlamethon" might mean (notice that in his autobiographical account Trismosin says that this manuscript was in Greek language, so it is to be supposed that the title itself was Greek too.)

theFool
03-09-2014, 04:26 PM
... no one in his right mind will deny that if I strongly swing a hammer and hit you in any of your fingers resting on a solid surface with it it will hurt you from the trauma. That is a fact, and we can prove it anytime you want to. And it doesn't have to necessarily be me swinging the hammer at your fingers either, by the way. The same results can be replicated by another grown up man in full use of his physical abilities. Would you like to put this assertion to the test? Bring the hammer and a couple of grown ups and we will test it anytime you want to...


The hammer-test joke can be easily applied to any normal healthy person whose nervous system is working properly, it does not have to be you.
For god's sake .. those are not jokes :(

Hellin Hermetist
03-09-2014, 05:12 PM
There is a subtle difference not often mentioned. Many assume that each of the paths are totally different (although all leading to the same end product), and thus they try to discredit one approach over another, or run into all sorts of discrepancies trying to compare one approach with another. There is also the endless debate about the first matters that are used and the "prima materia". In my opinion, the two are not the same. So what I'm saying, is that it's possible that many of the different approaches are all legitimate, and all lead to the very same prima materia. It's at this point that most authors begin their treatises.

Few of them mention the initial preparation that leads to the starting matter that they refer to as the prima materia. Thus many assume that the prima materia that they are talking about is actually the matter(s) used in the preparation, whether it's antimony, lead, or whatever. This is what possibly leads to such confusion, and the reason why much of the practice constantly fails to produce the observations mentioned by the Philosophers.

Thus the subtle - but huge - difference in the options. One option assumes that all the approaches are different throughout, but eventually lead to the very same Stone. The other option that I mention, is that all the approaches are initially different during the preparation stage only, but which all lead to the same prima materia, and that the rest of the approach (the one from which most authors start) is identical for each.

Thus you can see the huge significance of the subtlety.

I understand your point, but we can clearly see that there were at least two different approaches with respect to the materia prima of the work. So Trevisan, D' Espgnet, Valois, Philalethes and many others, affrims that common gold reduced to a mercurial form is the first matter of the work. On the other hand, Limojon de St Didier, following the doctrine of the author of the ancient war of the knights, rejects most emphatically the aforementioned path and says that gold is only good to ferment the already accomplished but undetermined stone.

For example, lets take a look at the Hermetic Arcanum of D' Espagnet. We can read there:

24. They that hold Sulphur and Mercury to be the First Matter of the Stone, by the name of Sulphur they understand Sol; by Mercury the Philosophic Luna; so (without dissimulation) good Lullius adviseth his friend, that he attempt not to work without Mercury and Luna for Silver; nor without Mercury and Sol for Gold.

30. Mercury is alone among the imperfect metals, fit to receive the tincture of Sol and Luna in the work of the Philosophers' Stone, and being itself full of tincture can tinge other metals in abundance; yet ought it (before that) to be full of invisible Sulphur, that it may be the more coloured with the visible tincture of perfect bodies, and so repay with sufficient Usury.

44. He that calleth the Philosophers' Luna or their Mercury, the common Mercury, doth wittingly deceive, or is deceived himself; so the writings of Geber teach us, that the Philosophers' Mercury is Argent vive, yet not of the common sort, but extracted out of it by the Philosophers' skill.

45. The Philosophers' Mercury is not Argent vive in its proper nature, nor in its whole substance, but is only the middle and pure substance thereof, which thence hath taken its origin and has been made by it. This opinion of the grand Philosophers is founded on experience.

42. In the Philosophical sublimation or first preparation of Mercury, Herculean labour must be undergone by the workman; for Jason had in vain attempted his expedition to Colchos without Alcides.

We can see from the above, that according to D' Espagnet, the Luna of the philosophers is extracted from common metallic mercury by a certain kind of sublimation, and Sol of the philosophers is common gold. And that is also the doctrine which teaches Trevisan in his Epistle to Thomas of Bononia, Philalethes and other authors. If we now go to the Hermetic Triumph, we can see that Limojon de St Didier in his dialogue mentinons the above authors as true adepts and possesors of the stone, and after that he adopts the doctrine of the author of the ancient war of the knights, so he rejects the theories of the same authors which he had earlier called accomplished adepts. (In the way of Hermetic Triumph Sol and Luna of the philosophers are extratced from a certain ore and not from metallic mercury and gold).

What about Basil Valentine? He was a capable chemist for sure, and many authors mentions his name with the greatest respect, but as mentioned JPD, he also thought that the precipitation of copper by means of iron in a solution is a real metallic transmutation. We can see from the above, that the myth propagated mainly by Fulcanelli, who says that the alchemists made use of a special solvent extracted from a certain ore, by the help of which they extracted unknown chemical substances from the bodies of common metals, and that all those alchemists were the succesors of some ancient secret which made them able to understand clearly some unknown physical laws, is not true at all.

lwowl
03-09-2014, 05:17 PM
I must disagree. Even though it is an interesting text, it does not reveal anything clear about what substance is being really meant. Plus if you read other works by Ripley you will see that he himself says or implies that the Stone is actually made from more than just one single simple matter (in his "Liber Secretissimus", for example, he uses the code-word "Antimony" for the substance to be worked on, and he clearly says that it is not the natural antimony but a composite substance, made by the alchemist himself from the interaction between three initial substances, which he does not clearly explain what they are.) This whole "one matter, one vessel, one regimen" adage that many alchemists keep repeating is nothing but a death-trap when taken so literally. There isn't any single simple material in the world that will do the things they describe.

By the way, I was in fact one of the people who transcribed that English version of the "Philorcium" from a manuscript in the British Library that contains a collection of Ripley's texts in English (this happened at the now defunct "Alkahest" forum of Beat Krummenacher and Frank Burton.)

Then we can agree to disagree. I have found that text and all of Ripley's treatises that I have to be quite revealing. It is a shame you couldn't see that what Ripley said there is the key to all of his confusion of names:

"But the philosophers themselves
22 have not so much minded the names as the truth of
23 the names, for by what name sooner our stone is nominated that
24 it is but one thing, which were it but known, it could
25 not be permitted to be so common as it is, as well to the
1 poor as to the rich, nor would it ly in the streets to be trod on
2 by human feet. And that I may open unto thee this thing, know
3 by god that it is one of those things, which are of the seven days, & the
4 viler of them."

Of course Ripley discusses this in other docs as well. So what day do you think he is referring to? Perhaps it was the day people used to take out the garbage:) As you can read he states that the names given out, no matter how diverse and confusing, all refer to the components derived from the one thing.

Liber Secretissimus is a great example where he uses the names of specific commonly known materials to describe separated components of the one thing. Of course you will probably disagree with that as well. I am really surprised you dismissed Ripley so easily after you and Beat went through the trouble to transcribe that horrible hand writing of Ripley's. At least I got reams of revelation from those docs so thanks.


This whole "one matter, one vessel, one regimen" adage that many alchemists keep repeating is nothing but a death-trap when taken so literally. There isn't any single simple material in the world that will do the things they describe.

I would have to disagree with you on that due to results in my own lab. Because of that I am unable to entertain your a priori dismissal of the "one matter, one vessel, one regimen," as if you could make it go away with a wave of your hand:)

So far I have found in my lab that the following from Ripley is reproducible, though I have not refined the elixir yet only because I didn't have enough of the Philosophical Earth. Now I do:

And know that in that earth is a fire
13 & in that water is Air, & the earth putrefied with his own
14 water, until the 4 elements may be separated from them, if
15 the artist will copiously & without negligence proceed on in the
16 rule of distilling them. Yet it sufficeth for the complement
17 of the elixir to separate the water from the earth & to
18 deal with the earth by calcination, & to rectify the water by
19 circulation & again to conjoyne it as is permitted within
20 24 ways of practising

Hellin Hermetist
03-09-2014, 05:27 PM
And that I may open unto thee this thing, know
3 by god that it is one of those things, which are of the seven days, & the
4 viler of them."


As the days of the week were connected with the gods and every god was connected with a metal, do you think that his first matter is one of the seven metals?

lwowl
03-09-2014, 08:12 PM
As the days of the week were connected with the gods and every god was connected with a metal, do you think that his first matter is one of the seven metals?

No I don't believe it is. The metals are dead as the old adepts said. They have to be revived with argent vive, according to my understanding. Still, if one were to pick a day of the week with the gods and planets in mind then Saturday would be the obvious choice. Then from Saturday you get the god Saturn, so the metal would be lead, or an ore of lead. Lead does not meet Ripley's description of one only matter. In the Philorcium Ripley says this about saturn:

15 But beware that thou doest not operate with saturn, because it is
16 a common saying; eat not of the son whose mother is corrupt
17 & believe me that many err in saturn. Hear what Avicen
18 saith, saturn will always be saturn, yea rather work
19 in the earth of saturn which his spirit hath despised &
20 left as the worst sulphur; operate only with the odor of it
21 to congeale mercury; yet not as fools do but as the philosophers
22 & thou shall have a very good work. But yet beware in that
23 work that thou drawest not in the saturnine odour for it is poy-
24 sonous

From Ripley's Marrow of Alchemy:

III. And therefore to confirm this, Raymundus saith, O my Son, Our Tincture is drawn out of one Vile thing, and is decked, finished, and ended with another thing which is more Noble; for we do Ferment it with Vulgar Gold: He calls it Vile, because he saith it is sometimes found in Vile Places, as in Old Draughts: also it is Vile, because (as Raymundus saith) it is found not only in a filthy form, and ugly shape, but because it is in every thing, of the which (saith Albertus) is made a Permanent or fixt Water.

Hellin Hermetist
03-09-2014, 09:29 PM
The texts that usually speak clearly enough to be easily followed are rather by "chymists" than "alchemists", and they usually involve "particular" processes, not the Philosophers' Stone. Very rarely you will find texts that can be fully deemed as "alchemical" describing the matters to be used in an apparently totally clear manner.

Even in some of your examples we can see this difference. You mentioned the claim about mercury being distilled from an amalgam with "Martial regulus" of antimony. This claim made its debut in the work on antimony by Alexander von Suchten, who never said that such mercury can be used to make the Philosophers' Stone. He was talking about making artificial metals "directly" with that mercury, no need for preparing any "tincture". He ended up rejecting such methods as ineffective. Then Starkey took over this idea, but gave it his own "spin": unlike Suchten, he claimed that the Philosophers' Stone was made with this mercury (of course, his surviving lab notebooks show that he kept failing to do so over and over again, a very different picture than Starkey's public claims of success under his "Eirenaeus Philalethes" persona.) This claim was then subsequently tested by the likes of Boyle, Newton, Wilson, Boerhaave, etc. and none of them found any validity to it. No one managed to prepare any transmuting powder with such methods (incredibly enough, there's still some people in this day and age wasting time and money trying to make the Philosophers' Stone this way, despite all this overwhelming evidence of historical failures with this method.) So we know for a fact that in this case the whole thing was a series of unfortunate misunderstandings, lies and erroneous claims and assumptions that led many people to waste their time and money to achieve absolutely nothing.

So to answer your question: yes, most of the "clear" processes are erroneous or deliberate lies.

What is your opinion of the work which has corrosive sublimate as its main material, and has been described at the Bacstrom's manuscript which elucidate the Book of Lambspring and in some other treatises with some variations. Has any of older chemists tried to accomplish the process? Have u ever worked under those lines?

Illen A. Cluf
03-10-2014, 03:18 AM
We can see from the above, that according to D' Espagnet, the Luna of the philosophers is extracted from common metallic mercury by a certain kind of sublimation, and Sol of the philosophers is common gold. And that is also the doctrine which teaches Trevisan in his Epistle to Thomas of Bononia, Philalethes and other authors. If we now go to the Hermetic Triumph, we can see that Limojon de St Didier in his dialogue mentinons the above authors as true adepts and possesors of the stone, and after that he adopts the doctrine of the author of the ancient war of the knights, so he rejects the theories of the same authors which he had earlier called accomplished adepts. (In the way of Hermetic Triumph Sol and Luna of the philosophers are extratced from a certain ore and not from metallic mercury and gold).

It's difficult to understand exactly what the authors were implying from these quotes alone. It's possible that each author used the terms "Sol" and "Luna" to represent the progress of the Stone at different parts of the process. I will have to go through these works carefully before I can comment further.

JDP
03-10-2014, 02:58 PM
Then we can agree to disagree. I have found that text and all of Ripley's treatises that I have to be quite revealing. It is a shame you couldn't see that what Ripley said there is the key to all of his confusion of names:

"But the philosophers themselves
22 have not so much minded the names as the truth of
23 the names, for by what name sooner our stone is nominated that
24 it is but one thing, which were it but known, it could
25 not be permitted to be so common as it is, as well to the
1 poor as to the rich, nor would it ly in the streets to be trod on
2 by human feet. And that I may open unto thee this thing, know
3 by god that it is one of those things, which are of the seven days, & the
4 viler of them."

Of course Ripley discusses this in other docs as well. So what day do you think he is referring to? Perhaps it was the day people used to take out the garbage:) As you can read he states that the names given out, no matter how diverse and confusing, all refer to the components derived from the one thing.

I think you are very well aware that with the only exception of the "clue" about one of the "seven days", Ripley is here not saying anything that hasn't been said by other writers, which did not entirely clarify anything in those other writings either. Regarding the "viler" of the days of the week "clue", it sounds like a completely arbitrary thing, as there is no such thing as a "viler" day of the week. Who knows what he had in mind by such an arbitrary remark.


Liber Secretissimus is a great example where he uses the names of specific commonly known materials to describe separated components of the one thing. Of course you will probably disagree with that as well.

He clearly says that the matter from which the "menstruum" is distilled is a composite substance made out of three others, which he arbitrarily calls "one sulphur" and "two mercuries", but he does not give any really insightful hints regarding what substances might be hiding under such names.


I am really surprised you dismissed Ripley so easily after you and Beat went through the trouble to transcribe that horrible hand writing of Ripley's. At least I got reams of revelation from those docs so thanks.

Because he really does not reveal what are the substances he meant under that barrage of code-words ("Sericon", "Green Lion", "Gum Adrop", "Antimony", "Red Lead", etc.) His texts are still valuable because of some of the interesting descriptions he gives of the products obtained during the operations, though, which might help identify what they really are.


I would have to disagree with you on that due to results in my own lab. Because of that I am unable to entertain your a priori dismissal of the "one matter, one vessel, one regimen," as if you could make it go away with a wave of your hand:)

So far I have found in my lab that the following from Ripley is reproducible, though I have not refined the elixir yet only because I didn't have enough of the Philosophical Earth. Now I do:

And know that in that earth is a fire
13 & in that water is Air, & the earth putrefied with his own
14 water, until the 4 elements may be separated from them, if
15 the artist will copiously & without negligence proceed on in the
16 rule of distilling them. Yet it sufficeth for the complement
17 of the elixir to separate the water from the earth & to
18 deal with the earth by calcination, & to rectify the water by
19 circulation & again to conjoyne it as is permitted within
20 24 ways of practising

By the way, I know very well what is this "one matter" that you have in mind, since we both had a brief private email discussion about it back in the day. I even pointed out for you an interesting passage in Ripley's "Marrow of Alchemy" which at first glance gives the impression of supporting your theory of what this substance is, which I remember was much to your liking. But still, it has been years since then, and I can see that you still have not obtained the Stone by manipulating this substance. Since you are so thankful for my work transcribing Ripley's treatises, if you want to ever "repay" me, the day that you succeed (if you ever do) in actually confirming that your interpretation of his texts is indeed correct and obtain the Stone that transmutes metals into silver and gold, please send me a sample so I can put it to the test myself and confirm the veracity of it. Don't be like Beat and his imaginary "alkahest" that supposedly destroys metals ;) You know well what I am talking about.

JDP
03-10-2014, 03:14 PM
What is your opinion of the work which has corrosive sublimate as its main material, and has been described at the Bacstrom's manuscript which elucidate the Book of Lambspring and in some other treatises with some variations. Has any of older chemists tried to accomplish the process? Have u ever worked under those lines?

Bacstrom was an antimonialist, he clearly thought that the Philosophers' Stone was made by fusing regulus of antimony with gold or silver and then making a "butter" of such alloys by means of corrosive sublimate. After a long digestion the Stone would supposedly result. The fact that Bacstrom died in poverty should tell you that he never succeeded with such a scheme. So I most certainly don't believe that such methods will ever produce the Philosophers' Stone. But there are also those (like Creiling, for example) who claim that they did obtain positive results with "particular" processes involving butter of antimony that give small quantities of gold out of silver. These "chymical" claims remain to be tested (I will get to them in due time; there are a lot of transmutation claims to be tested!)

lwowl
03-10-2014, 05:17 PM
I think you are very well aware that with the only exception of the "clue" about one of the "seven days", Ripley is here not saying anything that hasn't been said by other writers, which did not entirely clarify anything in those other writings either. Regarding the "viler" of the days of the week "clue", it sounds like a completely arbitrary thing, as there is no such thing as a "viler" day of the week. Who knows what he had in mind by such an arbitrary remark.



Since you and I did not live in the 1500s we do not know what day they took out the garbage:) Sure Ripley is repeating the same clues to the starting material as have other adepts.

Also we don't use the same energy resources to heat our dwellings as they did because we've used most of it up. Plus the fallout from it used to cover everything with a vile black substance. But that particular substance is just one manifestation derived from the starting material.


He clearly says that the matter from which the "menstruum" is distilled is a composite substance made out of three others, which he arbitrarily calls "one sulphur" and "two mercuries", but he does not give any really insightful hints regarding what substances might be hiding under such names.

Ripley's Philorcium:
When thou hadest
21 a philosopher saying take this or that, always understand it
22 of this stone, or of the parts thereof separated,


By the way, I know very well what is this "one matter" that you have in mind, since we both had a brief private email discussion about it back in the day. I even pointed out for you an interesting passage in Ripley's "Marrow of Alchemy" which at first glance gives the impression of supporting your theory of what this substance is, which I remember was much to your liking. But still, it has been years since then, and I can see that you still have not obtained the Stone by manipulating this substance. Since you are so thankful for my work transcribing Ripley's treatises, if you want to ever "repay" me, the day that you succeed (if you ever do) in actually confirming that your interpretation of his texts is indeed correct and obtain the Stone that transmutes metals into silver and gold, please send me a sample so I can put it to the test myself and confirm the veracity of it. Don't be like Beat and his imaginary "alkahest" that supposedly destroys metals You know well what I am talking about.

The reason why it's been years since my first experiments with the substance shown in Philosopher's Spirit of Wine (http://www.alchemylife.org/Pages/PhiloSpiritWine/PhiloSpiritWine.html) has nothing to do with failures in the lab. It has everything to do with the federal thugs "Bush(whackers)" that ran my government then, seizing my lab and notes in retaliation for derailing their prohibition train. I spent 7 years under their close scrutiny including three and a half years under house arrest. Now I'm free of the fanatical Bush(ites).

I've done quite a bit in the lab since then. And it has all been successful thus far. Since you "know" what particular preparation of the one matter I was using then, I am surprised you did not try it yourself and then you could say it is a fraud or I am wrong. Instead you say, "at first glance gives the impression of supporting your theory of what this substance is."

Since you know what I mean by Philosophical Earth why don't you just take the substance and put it to the trial in your lab, and as at least two others have done, and see what evolves for yourself. Of course it is the labors of Hercules to get 30 pounds of that Earth. However you can get good test results from about one pound but that won't be enough to go much farther than the heavenly spirit of Lull and Guido.

I will "repay" you for that one piece of pertinent information you gave me by telling you exactly how to proceed as I did, but only in private.

It is a pity that Frank died just as the Alkaest group was just getting warmed up. Too bad Beat was infected with paranoia and suspicion that destroyed the whole group. At least some very good translations and transcriptions came out of it, but what a pity we didn't get to open experimental phases.

Hellin Hermetist
03-10-2014, 05:55 PM
Bacstrom was an antimonialist, he clearly thought that the Philosophers' Stone was made by fusing regulus of antimony with gold or silver and then making a "butter" of such alloys by means of corrosive sublimate. After a long digestion the Stone would supposedly result. The fact that Bacstrom died in poverty should tell you that he never succeeded with such a scheme. So I most certainly don't believe that such methods will ever produce the Philosophers' Stone. But there are also those (like Creiling, for example) who claim that they did obtain positive results with "particular" processes involving butter of antimony that give small quantities of gold out of silver. These "chymical" claims remain to be tested (I will get to them in due time; there are a lot of transmutation claims to be tested!)

I believe that Bacstrom was a real honest person, but not very critical in his approach to the Chemical Works found in his manuscripts. It seems that he thought that all the Works described in the manuscripts he had in his possesion were valid, and even when he tried this or that process and didnt get the expected results, he usually blamed himself and not the author of the process. He had done some work with the antimonial butter, and if I remember right he got some interesting crystallisation patterns, but nothing like a stone able to transmute metals. Of course he hadnt put all the processes found in his manuscript to the test, so we cant reject all of them from the begining. He mainly tried approaches based on the antimonial butter.

Back to the topic. The Lambspring porcess, as elucidated at the Bacstrom manuscript, has nothing to do with antimony. It uses only mercury, corrosives and Gold or Silver. It seems also to be a universal work, as the author of the process says that the accomplished stone transforms at least 10000 parts of its weight of mercury into gold. I can send it to you at pdf format if you are interested. As recently I was able to acquire some mercury, I am going to try some parts of the process when I shall find time to build a proper hood.

JDP
03-11-2014, 02:20 PM
Since you and I did not live in the 1500s we do not know what day they took out the garbage:) Sure Ripley is repeating the same clues to the starting material as have other adepts.

Also we don't use the same energy resources to heat our dwellings as they did because we've used most of it up. Plus the fallout from it used to cover everything with a vile black substance. But that particular substance is just one manifestation derived from the starting material.

Well, Ripley lived in the 1400s, but yes, those are fairly correct observations. Air pollution in old times was mostly due to what you have in mind:

http://www2.sci.u-szeged.hu/eghajlattan/akta03/005-015.pdf


Ripley's Philorcium:
When thou hadest
21 a philosopher saying take this or that, always understand it
22 of this stone, or of the parts thereof separated,

Yes, I know, but at the same time Ripley also several times states or implies that the Stone is made out of the interaction of several materials, particularly 3 things which he keeps "camouflaging" under many different code-words. Also, why does he bother to apply code-words to substances that already are supposedly coming from this mysterious "one thing"? It does not make much sense, since it goes without saying that if the "one thing" is unknown to most people, so will whatever products are derived from it. So why the need to hide these "three things" with more code-words?

There is a strange and rather annoying contradictory sense going on with this topic, and not only in Ripley's texts, but in those of many other authors. The claim that the matter of the Stone is "only one" to which nothing else is added has all the looks of a blatant bobby-trap designed to fool people into wasting time and money heating just one material at a time inside flasks to see "what happens". Of course, no one got anywhere with such methods. Such a claim does not match the descriptions of the products they claim are obtained during the operations, plus common sense dictates that there is not any single simple material that can do all the things they describe.


The reason why it's been years since my first experiments with the substance shown in Philosopher's Spirit of Wine (http://www.alchemylife.org/Pages/PhiloSpiritWine/PhiloSpiritWine.html) has nothing to do with failures in the lab. It has everything to do with the federal thugs "Bush(whackers)" that ran my government then, seizing my lab and notes in retaliation for derailing their prohibition train. I spent 7 years under their close scrutiny including three and a half years under house arrest. Now I'm free of the fanatical Bush(ites).

I wasn't aware that Bush's government had something against alchemical research. Joking aside, from your statements I suppose this has to do with something else, and they just targeted your lab equipment to mess with you.


I've done quite a bit in the lab since then. And it has all been successful thus far. Since you "know" what particular preparation of the one matter I was using then, I am surprised you did not try it yourself and then you could say it is a fraud or I am wrong. Instead you say, "at first glance gives the impression of supporting your theory of what this substance is."

Since you know what I mean by Philosophical Earth why don't you just take the substance and put it to the trial in your lab, and as at least two others have done, and see what evolves for yourself. Of course it is the labors of Hercules to get 30 pounds of that Earth. However you can get good test results from about one pound but that won't be enough to go much farther than the heavenly spirit of Lull and Guido.

There's several things that have kept me from trying your theory. First of all, I did not see much progress in your research after a while (you have explained why now.) I was expecting that perhaps you would report more positive results (and I mean more definitive results, not just colors that seem to match some of the descriptions.) So all this time I have considered it another "yet to be proved" claim. Second, as you point out yourself, this substance is much harder to locate nowadays than it was in the past, plus it's bulky and bothersome to work with, and apparently it requires large quantities of it to give any workable amount of its byproducts. I don't yet have the kind of equipment (large glass or ceramic retorts would be the ideal vessels to begin the operations with, which in this day and age are also quite hard to come by and will probably have to be improvised from more readily available products, or custom made by a glassblower or potter) and space (such large vessels would have to be heated in furnaces large enough where they could fit) to deal with such large amounts of material to be distilled.


I will "repay" you for that one piece of pertinent information you gave me by telling you exactly how to proceed as I did, but only in private.

Sounds good. By the way, where did you get that quote attributed to "John Maynard" and the treatise it says it comes from? I haven't been able to trace it.


It is a pity that Frank died just as the Alkaest group was just getting warmed up. Too bad Beat was infected with paranoia and suspicion that destroyed the whole group. At least some very good translations and transcriptions came out of it, but what a pity we didn't get to open experimental phases.

Yes, Beat was also infected with the "boasting virus". He never proved to anyone that he does know how to prepare that special solvent that supposedly "destroys" metals and does not allow them to be reduced back to their metallic state.

JDP
03-11-2014, 02:37 PM
I believe that Bacstrom was a real honest person, but not very critical in his approach to the Chemical Works found in his manuscripts. It seems that he thought that all the Works described in the manuscripts he had in his possesion were valid, and even when he tried this or that process and didnt get the expected results, he usually blamed himself and not the author of the process. He had done some work with the antimonial butter, and if I remember right he got some interesting crystallisation patterns, but nothing like a stone able to transmute metals. Of course he hadnt put all the processes found in his manuscript to the test, so we cant reject all of them from the begining. He mainly tried approaches based on the antimonial butter.

Back to the topic. The Lambspring porcess, as elucidated at the Bacstrom manuscript, has nothing to do with antimony. It uses only mercury, corrosives and Gold or Silver. It seems also to be a universal work, as the author of the process says that the accomplished stone transforms at least 10000 parts of its weight of mercury into gold. I can send it to you at pdf format if you are interested. As recently I was able to acquire some mercury, I am going to try some parts of the process when I shall find time to build a proper hood.

Yes, Bacstrom was honest, but as you point out yourself, he was also rather naive and gullible. He basically took everyone's word for granted regarding success in making the Stone or any transmuting tincture. When he failed to obtained the same results, it did not seem to occur to him that some of his sources might very well have been just lying and making up fairy tales to impress their readers.

I think I have that text, I just don't remember what exactly did Bacstrom claim there. Most of the texts that fell into his hands he interpreted as follows:

antimony regulus + gold or silver + corrosive sublimate

Just look at his so-called alchemical anthology. He cites a whole bunch of alchemical texts there, which he keeps interpreting with the same theory in mind.

Hellin Hermetist
03-11-2014, 04:35 PM
Yes, Bacstrom was honest, but as you point out yourself, he was also rather naive and gullible. He basically took everyone's word for granted regarding success in making the Stone or any transmuting tincture. When he failed to obtained the same results, it did not seem to occur to him that some of his sources might very well have been just lying and making up fairy tales to impress their readers.

I think I have that text, I just don't remember what exactly did Bacstrom claim there. Most of the texts that fell into his hands he interpreted as follows:

antimony regulus + gold or silver + corrosive sublimate

Just look at his so-called alchemical anthology. He cites a whole bunch of alchemical texts there, which he keeps interpreting with the same theory in mind.

The process is the following: Corrosive sublimate dissolved in nitric acid. Distillation of the acid and the remaining humidity and sublimation of the produced salt. Reduction of the salt to viscous water at the wet heat of a balneo. Solution of gold or Silver laminas in this viscous water and digestion. Extraction of the humid part by distillation until we have an oily substance. Digestion of that oily substance in a low heat and reduction of it to a white Powder in five months time (after passing through the intermediate stages). Thats he calls his Sulfur of moon.

Bacstrom says that he was never able to try that process but seems plausible to him. The whole process is described in the clearest words so Bacstom doesnt give any intepretation to it.

lwowl
03-11-2014, 05:41 PM
Yes, I know, but at the same time Ripley also several times states or implies that the Stone is made out of the interaction of several materials, particularly 3 things which he keeps "camouflaging" under many different code-words. Also, why does he bother to apply code-words to substances that already are supposedly coming from this mysterious "one thing"? It does not make much sense, since it goes without saying that if the "one thing" is unknown to most people, so will whatever products are derived from it. So why the need to hide these "three things" with more code-words?


I don’t know why the fascination with codes and obfustication but from what I’ve read the educated people back then had a lot of free time on their hands and no TV or radio to amuse them so they liked anagrams and puzzles and riddles to solve. Plus they felt aloof and above the common vulgar unlearned peasant types. Perhaps they were just having fun making it hard to fathom for the uninitiated.

The old ones certainly liked to use the chymical terminology of the mining industries to discuss what appears to me to be their parallel explorations in organic polymer chemistry.


There is a strange and rather annoying contradictory sense going on with this topic, and not only in Ripley's texts, but in those of many other authors. The claim that the matter of the Stone is "only one" to which nothing else is added has all the looks of a blatant bobby-trap designed to fool people into wasting time and money heating just one material at a time inside flasks to see "what happens". Of course, no one got anywhere with such methods. Such a claim does not match the descriptions of the products they claim are obtained during the operations, plus common sense dictates that there is not any single simple material that can do all the things they describe.

It does appear that way until you take the biomass (one thing) and disintegrate it. The results, various as they are, very much resemble the materials described by the old adepts. So it all happens in one vessel to get the disintegrated elements. Then those elements are refined. Then those elements are recombined in various ways of operating in one vessel to produce the desired product.


I wasn't aware that Bush's government had something against alchemical research. Joking aside, from your statements I suppose this has to do with something else, and they just targeted your lab equipment to mess with you.

I was targeted by the Bush administration along with about two dozen other California political activists for spearheading the campaign that made medical marijuana legal. I made cannabis spagyric elixirs for the 2000 seriously ill members of a State legal patient cooperative in Los Angles. Two weeks after the 911 tragedy in one of the first uses of the Patriot Act in the US the Bush administration forced the news helicopters out of the air over our cooperative center in West Hollywood. They brought in portable walls and surrounded the building on Hollywood Blvd. so the news cameras could not film and then they raided the center.


I was expecting that perhaps you would report more positive results (and I mean more definitive results, not just colors that seem to match some of the descriptions.) So all this time I have considered it another "yet to be proved" claim.

I ran out of the blue spirit after some testing. The stuff has very low viscosity and appears to run uphill. When I first made it some drops slipped past the seal and dripped into the water bath of my well water and instantly the salts precipitated out with a light turquoise tint. I placed a few drops of muriatic acid into some of the spirit in test tubes. A white precipitate quickly formed. Then in one tube gold colored lattice crystals formed; in another gold ribbons formed above the white precipitate. The amounts were very small and I had no way to test them.


Second, as you point out yourself, this substance is much harder to locate nowadays than it was in the past, plus it's bulky and bothersome to work with, and apparently it requires large quantities of it to give any workable amount of its byproducts. I don't yet have the kind of equipment (large glass or ceramic retorts would be the ideal vessels to begin the operations with, which in this day and age are also quite hard to come by and will probably have to be improvised from more readily available products, or custom made by a glassblower or potter) and space (such large vessels would have to be heated in furnaces large enough where they could fit) to deal with such large amounts of material to be distilled.

That is a problem to get enough. I live in the forest where oak is readily available. I burn 3 to 6 cords of wood per year. I converted an electric kiln into a lab furnace that will hold a one liter reaction flask. It works quite well. I’m always looking at glass jars in the supermarket for how I could use them in the lab, not so much for the food in them:)


Sounds good. By the way, where did you get that quote attributed to "John Maynard" and the treatise it says it comes from? I haven't been able to trace it.

It was given to me by a fellow alchemist. Later he believed the doc was a fraud compiled by another modern alchemist. It’s not that the materials in it are phony but cobbled from other docs without crediting the original authors. Certiantly the section “On the Origin of Light and subtilia corporae,” is a plagiarism of Robert Grossetteste’s, “On Light or the Beginning of Forms.” I quoted one part: VII On the Essential Oyl of Soote. That part is quite similar to J.G. Toeltius, Coelum Reseratum Chymicum, 1612/1736. I can send you a copy if you like.

Jerry
03-11-2014, 06:12 PM
There's several things that have kept me from trying your theory. First of all, I did not see much progress in your research after a while (you have explained why now.) I was expecting that perhaps you would report more positive results (and I mean more definitive results, not just colors that seem to match some of the descriptions.) So all this time I have considered it another "yet to be proved" claim. Second, as you point out yourself, this substance is much harder to locate nowadays than it was in the past, plus it's bulky and bothersome to work with, and apparently it requires large quantities of it to give any workable amount of its byproducts. I don't yet have the kind of equipment (large glass or ceramic retorts would be the ideal vessels to begin the operations with, which in this day and age are also quite hard to come by and will probably have to be improvised from more readily available products, or custom made by a glassblower or potter) and space (such large vessels would have to be heated in furnaces large enough where they could fit) to deal with such large amounts of material to be distilled.


Well, first of all, it isn’t his theory. The initial idea was developed by me in the late 1980s and discussed with various individuals who investigated it over the years. An index of substances in Boyle’s The Sceptical Chymist,(1661)was mentioned on another forum regarding the Salt of Soot. An individual who claims to be working for the alchemical community objected to the posting of this index and claimed it was his (dated 2003). The index was originally prepared by John S, Davidson (June, 2001). and published on the Internet as annotations.doc. To avoid further conflicts and bantering by Mr. Nice Guy, the discussion of this particular aspect of alchemy was moved to another forum where files and ideas were exchanged, and further developed.

The substance isn’t that difficult to acquire. Of course, if you mention work on these forums everybody runs for the exit. Instead of 20 pounds, why not try 2 grams in a test tube and see if you can relate it to the literature?

JDP
03-12-2014, 03:12 PM
The process is the following: Corrosive sublimate dissolved in nitric acid. Distillation of the acid and the remaining humidity and sublimation of the produced salt. Reduction of the salt to viscous water at the wet heat of a balneo. Solution of gold or Silver laminas in this viscous water and digestion. Extraction of the humid part by distillation until we have an oily substance. Digestion of that oily substance in a low heat and reduction of it to a white Powder in five months time (after passing through the intermediate stages). Thats he calls his Sulfur of moon.

Bacstrom says that he was never able to try that process but seems plausible to him. The whole process is described in the clearest words so Bacstom doesnt give any intepretation to it.

Doesn't look to me like "plausible" at all. There are "particular" processes that employ similar materials and procedures, but the claimed outcome is usually just some of the silver employed being turned into gold, nothing like the Philosophers' Stone.

JDP
03-12-2014, 03:27 PM
Well, first of all, it isn’t his theory. The initial idea was developed by me in the late 1980s and discussed with various individuals who investigated it over the years. An index of substances in Boyle’s The Sceptical Chymist,(1661)was mentioned on another forum regarding the Salt of Soot. An individual who claims to be working for the alchemical community objected to the posting of this index and claimed it was his (dated 2003). The index was originally prepared by John S, Davidson (June, 2001). and published on the Internet as annotations.doc. To avoid further conflicts and bantering by Mr. Nice Guy, the discussion of this particular aspect of alchemy was moved to another forum where files and ideas were exchanged, and further developed.

I don't know who came up with the idea first, but I first heard it from that other forum member many years ago when we were members of the Alkahest forum.


The substance isn’t that difficult to acquire. Of course, if you mention work on these forums everybody runs for the exit. Instead of 20 pounds, why not try 2 grams in a test tube and see if you can relate it to the literature?

Really? Where can you get large quantities of it? The only place I have seen it for sale is in artist supply stores, and only in small quantities at ridiculous prices.

As has been pointed out by "lwowl", a good quantity of it is needed in order to get a sizable amount of byproducts for experimentation.

By the way, one of the first writers I can remember who gave a clear description of the distillation of this substance was Blaise de la Vigenere in his "Discourse of Fire and Salt", so anyone who has read such descriptions can get an idea of what can be obtained; he describes them as: a "water", an "oil" and a "salt". But he does not seem to make any claim that this operation is the "big secret" of the alchemists. At the time I first read that work I had no idea that anyone had attempted to identify the distillation of this substance with the operations described by the alchemists in a more secretive manner. Only years later I started seeing these interpretations.

JDP
03-12-2014, 03:44 PM
I don’t know why the fascination with codes and obfustication but from what I’ve read the educated people back then had a lot of free time on their hands and no TV or radio to amuse them so they liked anagrams and puzzles and riddles to solve. Plus they felt aloof and above the common vulgar unlearned peasant types. Perhaps they were just having fun making it hard to fathom for the uninitiated.

The old ones certainly liked to use the chymical terminology of the mining industries to discuss what appears to me to be their parallel explorations in organic polymer chemistry.

It is wise to keep an open mind and consider the possibility that they were not really being misleading when they assure that some metallic substances enter the composition as well.


It does appear that way until you take the biomass (one thing) and disintegrate it. The results, various as they are, very much resemble the materials described by the old adepts. So it all happens in one vessel to get the disintegrated elements. Then those elements are refined. Then those elements are recombined in various ways of operating in one vessel to produce the desired product.

Yes, but the problem is that there seem to be other materials which also can appear to give similar results. Just consider how many people have been convinced that acetates were the substances being talked about in secretive ways, since some of them can also give the appearance of fitting some of the things described by the "adepts".


I ran out of the blue spirit after some testing. The stuff has very low viscosity and appears to run uphill. When I first made it some drops slipped past the seal and dripped into the water bath of my well water and instantly the salts precipitated out with a light turquoise tint. I placed a few drops of muriatic acid into some of the spirit in test tubes. A white precipitate quickly formed. Then in one tube gold colored lattice crystals formed; in another gold ribbons formed above the white precipitate. The amounts were very small and I had no way to test them.

Did the blue color have to do with the copper column used in the distillation of the "wine"?


That is a problem to get enough. I live in the forest where oak is readily available. I burn 3 to 6 cords of wood per year. I converted an electric kiln into a lab furnace that will hold a one liter reaction flask. It works quite well. I’m always looking at glass jars in the supermarket for how I could use them in the lab, not so much for the food in them:)

Yes, that happens to me too. Regular glass bottles and jars can be potentially useful items for improvising lab vessels.


It was given to me by a fellow alchemist. Later he believed the doc was a fraud compiled by another modern alchemist. It’s not that the materials in it are phony but cobbled from other docs without crediting the original authors. Certiantly the section “On the Origin of Light and subtilia corporae,” is a plagiarism of Robert Grossetteste’s, “On Light or the Beginning of Forms.” I quoted one part: VII On the Essential Oyl of Soote. That part is quite similar to J.G. Toeltius, Coelum Reseratum Chymicum, 1612/1736. I can send you a copy if you like.

OK, so let me see if I get this straight: the quote attributed to "John Maynard" is a forgery by a modern "alchemist", and it was composed out of bits and pieces from several writings. Is this correct? Well, no wonder I could not trace it to anywhere.

Do you have that work by Toeltius in English?

lwowl
03-12-2014, 05:42 PM
It is wise to keep an open mind and consider the possibility that they were not really being misleading when they assure that some metallic substances enter the composition as well.


I try to keep an open mind:-)
From my study of the literature cross-referenced with lab work results I've come to a hypothesis that in the refining stage of the elements metals are used, especially Cu: "Here it is to be Noted, that Raymundus commands this Tincture to be drawn out of the Body of Venus" -- from Ripley's Marrow of Alchemy.


Yes, but the problem is that there seem to be other materials which also can appear to give similar results. Just consider how many people have been convinced that acetates were the substances being talked about in secretive ways, since some of them can also give the appearance of fitting some of the things described by the "adepts".

That's a good example. Just look at what "Rubaphilos" has done literally following the vulgar intrepretation of Ripley as an "acetate path:" http://www.rubaphilos.com/images/acetate-steps.jpg. Except his confected green stone of lead looks like a species of feldspar similar to amazonite heavily laced with lead. He's teaching this stuff.


Did the blue color have to do with the copper column used in the distillation of the "wine"?

Yes it did. I realize it is a Copper ammonia complex. I ran a parallel experiment with ammonia and bleach sending the vapors through a copper wool scrubber. The Cu wool turned blue. That is where the similarities ended. The experimental Cu complex smelled of ammonia only while the blue spirit had a rich smoky aroma and one whiff of the blue spirit sharpened my mental focus for several hours. Light was much brighter and the colors were intense and I could actually multitask in my mind holding several scenarios running simultaneously. I've never been able to do that before. The lucid clarity was profound. My hypothesis is that indolamine was formed in the complex.


OK, so let me see if I get this straight: the quote attributed to "John Maynard" is a forgery by a modern "alchemist", and it was composed out of bits and pieces from several writings. Is this correct? Well, no wonder I could not trace it to anywhere.

Yes that is correct. Though I'm not sure the Oyl of Soote part is cobbled from other pieces as opposed to just being taken from a single work.


Do you have that work by Toeltius in English?

I have part of it translated by another alchemist that was experimenting with it. That's what I put into the Philo Spirit of Wine doc.: his lab notes. I have several other pages as well. The others seem to be how to make the Stone with the common materials Hungarian vitriol and niter, and the prep of Au, the use of Hg etc.

Also included is his translation how to make the Stone from oak chipboard and chimney soot then augmented with Au or Ag which he says will transmute Hg into Au. That is what he derived his lab notes from. I haven't tried that yet.

Chapter 32:
The Stone can be made also in this way:

Take fresh oak chipboards and fill a roomy Retort with it, attach also a big receiver and destill a vinegar from it. Make a quantity of it and rectifie vinegar until it is sharp enough.

Look for that you get 10 to 12 pfund of shiny chimney soot, divide the soot in many flask and pour the vinegar in each of them but only so much so that chimney soot can dissolve, let the flasks stay in the putrefaction for one month and it will putrefy.
After putrefaction is over put the flasks on the sand bath and destill all the Phlegma, then comes a burning Spirit that you need to rectifie until it is clear and nice but don't come close to direct Sunlight with it.

Continue destilling and an Acetum with volatile blood red salt will come over the helm, when everything has cooled down separate the oil from Acid, the Acid rectifie until it be strong and penetrant, the oil pour back on the carbonized remains and rectifie it two times from the remains until it is red like bood which is also a good medicine.

You must also have some Alcaline salt, take large quantity of well burned oak ashes and make a lye and cook the salt from it. The salt needs to be purified through calcination in the crucible and after this is done put it in a flask and pour the vinegar so that it can dissolve, put the mixture in B.M. and destill away all the Phlegma from it with slow fire, then pour another quantity of vinegar on the salt and destill the Phlegma in B.M. and repeat the operation until you notice that Phlegma taste somewhat acidic then this is a sign that the salt is saturated with Vinegar. Then pour the Spirit on the salt and proceed in everything you did with Vinegar and when the salt is saturated with Spirit then stop.

Put the saturated salt in a Retort attach a receiver and start to destill and everything will rise and go over the Helm with the salt like a fat Liquor and so you will have a Key for Gold, Silver and Quicksilver, dissolve Quicksilver in this liquor and after it Gold or Silver and you can fix this into a Stone and augment it with this Mecurial Liquor.

Remark about the process
Here the Author bring us to the chimney soot and teaches how to prepare a key for Gold and Silver from this black crow and to return them into their prime matter and later into a Stone which will work but this or that the Author has hidden and secluded.

First after after you destill the Vinegar from oak chipboards separate the Phegma through rectfications you must destill this Vingar over oak chipboards once again. On the preparation of the Spirit there is noting more to add also on the Oil but the salt it's still not pure enough but it must be repeatedly solved, filtered and coagulated until it stays as a fat butter then mix your Oil with the Vinegar or pour one part of Vinegar and one part of Oil on your salt and separate the Phlegma in two days and nights standing in B.M and this repeat until the Vinegar you poured upon salt destills with the same strength from it because this is a sign that the salt is saturated with Vinegar and Oil and cann't take another quantity. Prpceed likewise with the Spirit and then destill everything together and everything will rise together over the helm in a transparent Liquor. Rectifie this Liqour two more times and pour it upon cleaned Quicksilver and you will see what it can do. The red oil is responsible for transmutation and if such is not included it will not tinge in Gold but in yellowish Silver.

Take then Gold calx or Silver Calx one lot (about 15gr) and pour 4 loth of your Mercurial Liqour and put in a retort and digest it for 12 hours. If you fix it for longer period of time it will become too fixed and te Earth from Gold or Silver will be present which will hinder the Tincture from penetrating the metal radically. For this reason after 12 hours destill over the helm like a red juice or a butter and put in a flask so that 2/3 reman empty.

Put in on our Degree Oven for four months and it will go through all the colours and fix itself into a red blood Stone which you can augment with the red juice or butter. With the Silver the work is the same and the first time 1 part Stone tinges 10 parts in Gold tincture and 1 part of this Gold tincture tinges 100 parts of Quicksilver in Gold.

This Stone is also a good medicine when it's still in the First Order.

Jerry
03-12-2014, 07:16 PM
I don't know who came up with the idea first, but I first heard it from that other forum member many years ago when we were members of the Alkahest forum.


Maybe the “other forum member” discovered it? I had posted pictures of some of the work on the old akalhest forum run by “S”. This is not to be confused with the alkaest forum which was run by the pope of vegetables. The people on alkahest were more interested in gold drinking, rotting ibis eggs, bragging about files from a stolen microfilm, and ** bullshit. Intelligent discussions were taken elsewhere and ideas developed.

Really? Where can you get large quantities of it? The only place I have seen it for sale is in artist supply stores, and only in small quantities at ridiculous prices.

What “it” are you referring to? “It” comes in different flavours from a dusty powder, an oily sticky powder, a dry flake, pretty clumps, a gum, and in liquid.



As has been pointed out by "lwowl", a good quantity of it is needed in order to get a sizable amount of byproducts for experimentation.

There is something called micro-analysis.


By the way, one of the first writers I can remember who gave a clear description of the distillation of this substance was Blaise de la Vigenere in his "Discourse of Fire and Salt", so anyone who has read such descriptions can get an idea of what can be obtained; he describes them as: a "water", an "oil" and a "salt". But he does not seem to make any claim that this operation is the "big secret" of the alchemists. At the time I first read that work I had no idea that anyone had attempted to identify the distillation of this substance with the operations described by the alchemists in a more secretive manner. Only years later I started seeing these interpretations.

The “"water", an "oil" and a "salt".” in proper combination does appear to be a “universal panacea” (Spirit of Soot, Royal Chymistry, 1670) . This does seem to fit one of the claims of the adepts. It isn’t all about gold making.

The problem with the subject is that the literature is written using the all the same words which have different meanings in different operations. Everything needs to be understood within the context of which it was written.

JDP
03-13-2014, 04:08 PM
Maybe the “other forum member” discovered it? I had posted pictures of some of the work on the old akalhest forum run by “S”. This is not to be confused with the alkaest forum which was run by the pope of vegetables. The people on alkahest were more interested in gold drinking, rotting ibis eggs, bragging about files from a stolen microfilm, and ** bullshit. Intelligent discussions were taken elsewhere and ideas developed.

The "Alkahest" forum we mentioned before was the one run by Beat and Frank of the "Ars Regia Society" (a phantom organization, with its headquarters conveniently located squarely in the mind of its "members", two imaginary blocks left from Wild Dream Blvd, and just south of I Wanna Be A Cowboy When I Grow Up Avenue.) I was also a member of the forum run by Mr. Rotten Eggs, but one of his cronies kicked me out of it when I started criticizing their strange claims about pyramids, rotten eggs and so forth.


What “it” are you referring to? “It” comes in different flavours from a dusty powder, an oily sticky powder, a dry flake, pretty clumps, a gum, and in liquid.

As it is found in the places that Ripley seems to be referring to in that passage from his "Marrow of Alchemy".



There is something called micro-analysis.

Yes, but micro-analysis won't give you enough to work with, or get a better idea of what the byproducts are like. You can also try to distill just 2 grams of lead or zinc acetate to see what happens, but it won't really help you much in this regard though. These kinds of experiments need to be tried in larger quantities to get a better perspective. I recommend micro-analysis in cases when you suspect a substance might actually be dangerous to submit to heating, something you definitely would not like to blow up or burst into flames in large quantities with you standing nearby watching. I always check the stability of an unknown substance by first heating and giving hammer blows to small samples of it. Once it has been established that the material is stable and won't violently decompose when heated or given concussions, you proceed to experiment with larger quantities. In the case of this substance, clear descriptions of its distillation have been published since at least the times of Blaise de la Vigenere (16th century), so there is no fear of an unknown potentially dangerous reaction here. It's a stable substance. You have the "green light" to attempt to deal with large samples.


The “"water", an "oil" and a "salt".” in proper combination does appear to be a “universal panacea” (Spirit of Soot, Royal Chymistry, 1670) . This does seem to fit one of the claims of the adepts. It isn’t all about gold making.

The problem with the subject is that the literature is written using the all the same words which have different meanings in different operations. Everything needs to be understood within the context of which it was written.

But the ultimate proof of success in interpreting their more or less cryptic writings is the transmutation. If your interpretation of their texts allows you to prepare a substance that when projected upon a much larger quantity of a molten base metal turns it into silver or gold that withstands all the tests of natural silver and gold, then you most definitely have hit the nail on the head! With medicinal claims things are not as clear-cut since it is perfectly possible to misinterpret their writings, work on some totally erroneous substances, and yet succeed in preparing a substance with medicinal properties. It could be misleading. Transmutation is not.

JDP
03-13-2014, 04:22 PM
I try to keep an open mind:-)
From my study of the literature cross-referenced with lab work results I've come to a hypothesis that in the refining stage of the elements metals are used, especially Cu: "Here it is to be Noted, that Raymundus commands this Tincture to be drawn out of the Body of Venus" -- from Ripley's Marrow of Alchemy.

Yes, there are several instances of this in his texts (check out, for example, his "Twelve Gates", and look at what he says in one of the verses of the "Sixth Gate".)


That's a good example. Just look at what "Rubaphilos" has done literally following the vulgar intrepretation of Ripley as an "acetate path:" http://www.rubaphilos.com/images/acetate-steps.jpg. Except his confected green stone of lead looks like a species of feldspar similar to amazonite heavily laced with lead. He's teaching this stuff.

Yes, but, for all we know so far, working with the substance you have in mind could also be as erroneous as acetates.


I have part of it translated by another alchemist that was experimenting with it. That's what I put into the Philo Spirit of Wine doc.: his lab notes. I have several other pages as well. The others seem to be how to make the Stone with the common materials Hungarian vitriol and niter, and the prep of Au, the use of Hg etc.

My old email account from the "Alkahest" days is still around, so feel free to send it to me if you like. Do you still have that email address written down somewhere?

lwowl
03-13-2014, 07:14 PM
Yes, there are several instances of this in his texts (check out, for example, his "Twelve Gates", and look at what he says in one of the verses of the "Sixth Gate".)


Dame Venus can the troth of this thee tell,
At the beginning, to counsell if thou her call,


Yes, but, for all we know so far, working with the substance you have in mind could also be as erroneous as acetates.

I do know quite well that whatever end product I make this way will not have any Pb in it:)


My old email account from the "Alkahest" days is still around, so feel free to send it to me if you like. Do you still have that email address written down somewhere?

Do you mean the defunct Alkaest forum ran by Beat with the bothersome encryption keys. Or the older defunct Alkahest forum ran by ilkst aka S? No matter, I have your address from Rube's forum.

JDP
03-14-2014, 02:49 PM
Do you mean the defunct Alkaest forum ran by Beat with the bothersome encryption keys. Or the older defunct Alkahest forum ran by ilkst aka S? No matter, I have your address from Rube's forum.

Yes, the one ran by Beat and Frank. It's the same email address as the one I registered in Rubellus' forum.

Jerry
03-15-2014, 03:39 PM
I was also a member of the forum run by Mr. Rotten Eggs, but one of his cronies kicked me out of it when I started criticizing their strange claims about pyramids, rotten eggs and so forth.

I heard about the conflict with the master baiter of pyramideggology, the worshipper of the god Priapicus. Strange that you were thrown out since the “other forum member” is the one who created the forum and was the original owner. Ewe certainly don’t think that Al de Eggo had enuf funkshinall gnurons and smartz to create a forum. But you can also see how almost any interpretation can be made from the literature, except the right one.


As it is found in the places that Ripley seems to be referring to in that passage from his "Marrow of Alchemy".

You’re going to have to quote chapter and verse. It is difficult to know what the other person is thinking or what conclusions the other person reached.



Yes, but micro-analysis won't give you enough to work with, or get a better idea of what the byproducts are like. You can also try to distill just 2 grams of lead or zinc acetate to see what happens, but it won't really help you much in this regard though. These kinds of experiments need to be tried in larger quantities to get a better perspective. I recommend micro-analysis in cases when you suspect a substance might actually be dangerous to submit to heating, something you definitely would not like to blow up or burst into flames in large quantities with you standing nearby watching. I always check the stability of an unknown substance by first heating and giving hammer blows to small samples of it. Once it has been established that the material is stable and won't violently decompose when heated or given concussions, you proceed to experiment with larger quantities. In the case of this substance, clear descriptions of its distillation have been published since at least the times of Blaise de la Vigenere (16th century), so there is no fear of an unknown potentially dangerous reaction here. It's a stable substance. You have the "green light" to attempt to deal with large samples.

Spot analysis and ocular proofs are usually sufficient. It all depends on what one is doing as to what approach is needed. The first step is some sort of preliminary analysis. It is a good idea to work with someone to compare observations. One may see something different than another. I think that may be what Chef-Ra was trying to express. After all, the whole work is woman’s work and child’s play. There is no reason to make a mountain out of a mole hill.



But the ultimate proof of success in interpreting their more or less cryptic writings is the transmutation. If your interpretation of their texts allows you to prepare a substance that when projected upon a much larger quantity of a molten base metal turns it into silver or gold that withstands all the tests of natural silver and gold, then you most definitely have hit the nail on the head! With medicinal claims things are not as clear-cut since it is perfectly possible to misinterpret their writings, work on some totally erroneous substances, and yet succeed in preparing a substance with medicinal properties. It could be misleading. Transmutation is not.

There seem to be various opinions as to whether it is necessary to make the powder of projection to realize the Stone. Some say this is something that was developed at a later time and never was the original objective. There doesn’t seem to be any scientific basis of how all base metals can turn into silver (Ag) and gold (Au). I’m sure the transmutation aspect is a ruse, dead end, and unachievable objective designed to lead people astray. Of course, you never be sure so keep trying.


The concepts of dis-ease were not well understood in The Middle Ages and before. What may have been efficacious for treating various bacterial infections of the Egyptians would be considered useless today. The universal panacea could be considered more of a universal placebo. There a few sympathetic cures mentioned in the older literature. They probably work if you believe hard enough.

JDP
03-16-2014, 02:37 PM
I heard about the conflict with the master baiter of pyramideggology, the worshipper of the god Priapicus. Strange that you were thrown out since the “other forum member” is the one who created the forum and was the original owner. Ewe certainly don’t think that Al de Eggo had enuf funkshinall gnurons and smartz to create a forum. But you can also see how almost any interpretation can be made from the literature, except the right one.

Yes, correct, it was that other person who created and was managing the forum, but it was nominally Al's.


You’re going to have to quote chapter and verse. It is difficult to know what the other person is thinking or what conclusions the other person reached.

It was quoted earlier in the thread. You won't have trouble finding it. I pointed this passage out to lwowl many years ago when we both were members of that Alkahest forum of Beat & Frank and he was much pleased to find such an apparently clear statement regarding a typical place where this substance would be found.


Spot analysis and ocular proofs are usually sufficient. It all depends on what one is doing as to what approach is needed. The first step is some sort of preliminary analysis. It is a good idea to work with someone to compare observations. One may see something different than another. I think that may be what Chef-Ra was trying to express. After all, the whole work is woman’s work and child’s play. There is no reason to make a mountain out of a mole hill.

That's good enough if you are trying to find out what is the chemical composition of the byproducts from its distillation, but here the issue is whether these byproducts can fit the descriptions and properties of what the alchemists attribute to the products they obtained by the distillation of a mysterious substance or mixture/compound they keep hiding under a barrage of code-words with the deliberate intention to make it more difficult to figure out what substance/substances they were using. For that you need more substantial amounts of these byproducts to attempt to repeat their descriptions of the procedures.



There seem to be various opinions as to whether it is necessary to make the powder of projection to realize the Stone. Some say this is something that was developed at a later time and never was the original objective. There doesn’t seem to be any scientific basis of how all base metals can turn into silver (Ag) and gold (Au). I’m sure the transmutation aspect is a ruse, dead end, and unachievable objective designed to lead people astray. Of course, you never be sure so keep trying.

That's what anyone with at least some basic education in modern chemistry and physics would tend to conclude, but the problem is how persistent were these claims, and not just among the alchemists themselves. Even more puzzling/intriguing to modern ears are all the eye-witness accounts of people other than the alchemists themselves who became 100% convinced of the reality of this "tincture" that could transmute many times its own weight of base metals into silver and gold. Some people have tried to dismiss these accounts as "lies", "delusions", "ignorance", "mistakes", "deceit", etc. but in many instances none of these "explanations" can easily apply. For example, when the chemist and historian of science Lawrence Principe rediscovered Robert Boyle's eye-witness account of the transmutation of lead into gold by means of a small amount of such transmuting powder (donated by an anonymous wandering "adept" who visited him, whom Principe suspects was either the alchemist who called himself "Theodorus Mundanus" or his assistant), his admission regarding an "explanation" as to what made Boyle become convinced of its reality was simply "I wish I knew":

http://www.jhu.edu/jhumag/0299web/glitter.html

Because there is simply no way of easily "explaining" it away. This guy was not any "dreamer" or "ignoramus" but one of the pillars of modern science. In fact, it is very ironic that one of the "fathers" of modern chemistry, which holds the preclusion of the transmutation of any "element" into another by means of "chemical" reactions as one of its central tenets, was in fact 100% convinced through ocular demonstration that the Philosophers' Stone was very real.

DonSweet
03-16-2014, 04:46 PM
JDP ...

I've spent the last half hour or forty-five minutes going over this thread and examining your posts and others' reaction to them. No, I haven't done an in-depth study of your statements, neither am I compelled to. The gist is more than apparent.

It is clear that you are -- not just apparently, but in fact -- an empiricist of the highest order. You are a "show me" scientist. You are a "practicalist."

Now, there's nothing wrong with that ... let me make myself clear. None of that reference makes you a "bad" person or even one worthy of the slightest scorn.

However, that perspective, meaning the literal place from which you perceive, has little place, use or purpose in this forum.

What you fail to understand is the fact that Alchemy is not about chemistry in any way, shape or form. It it nearly irrelevant.

Now, I'll "empirically" define "nearly" by saying that it may be five to ten percent relevant.

Repeatedly throughout this thread you have said time-and-time again, "show me" in a myriad of syntax.

That is not Alchemy.

Literal "gold" is not Alchemy. You demand that golden nugget to be placed in your hand. You demand the process to be explained, step-by-step in order for you to replicate the process to see, touch, smell and taste the results. It must "exist" in your five-senses world. The esoteric must be proven.

You have it backwards ... perhaps even upside-down and inside-out.

Everything you feel, see, hear, touch, taste and/or perceive in any way, shape or form existed FIRST in the non-physical ...

... not the other way around.

Alchemy is not the "science" of proving the non-physical, but the Exploration of the Physical from the Esoteric Perspective.

My physical body is a PROJECTION of my non-physical, eternal, esoteric, ethereal body ... and the word "body" is in-and-of-itself misleading, but a necessary fallacy of physical communication.

Our references ... our personal perspectives ... could not be more polar opposites.

You sit, on your side of the computer, in your physical body exploring your Physical Universe with your Physical Laws and your hands-on tangibility, requiring your ocular proof and your empirical physical sensory repetition.

I sit, on my side of the computer, in a "sack-of-goo" that is a tiny reflection of my greater self that functions as a "lens" to perceive a narrow focus of a few wavelengths of combined energy that generates a set of circumstances some call "reality" ... when, in fact, actual reality is far too complex for this simple lens to perceive, conceive or even communicate within the highly limited range of waveforms.

You stand on a small hill on a tiny island, surrounded by an ocean that covers a speck of dust that is blowing in a wisp of a cloud in an obscure corner of the orgasmic multidimensional typhoon of the Universe.

I am blowing on that wind looking down on your tiny island.

Bold statement on my part.

Does it make me better than you?

No.

It merely makes my perspective different.

Does it make me right and you wrong?

No ...

... especially since we're exploring the same "space."

What it DOES say, however, is that your perspective is self-limiting. You demand that your five senses provide you with proof of the existence of things beyond your five senses.

Think about that.

Do you even need to think about that?

It's a self-defeating hypothesis.

Whatever an Alchemist discovers, it is not an "invention" ... for, in fact, there is no such thing as "invention" ... creating something that didn't exist before.

Everything that exists, has existed or will exist, has existed since the moment of Creation. All the rules were written in that Moment. Both the Alpha and the Omega coexisted at that Sacred Moment and continue to coexist at this very moment ... and everything in between.

We "live" in that in-between. We explore it and that "It" is the It that is All of Creation.

"Show me" can either be a Supreme Arrogance, or an Utter Humility, and either is totally dependent on the perspective of the Observer.

Having a miniscule, pathetic inkling of the size and scope of the Universe and Eternity, I take a position of Utter Humility.

I don't wake up each morning stating that I know what I know and to know more someone's going to have to damned well prove it to me.

I wake up every morning saying, "Holy crap. This is unbelievable. This is shocking. This is THE Eternal Adventure Park. THIS makes living wondrous, exciting and a True Adventure, as well as an astonishingly Precious Gift from the astounding vastness of Creation Itself."

No ... I do not need proof of the ethereal, I do not need to know that Love "exists" in all its forms. I can FEEL that.

I'll take the "interacted physical as it relates to the ethereal" ... the "ether-real" ... over the "prove-to-me-the-ethereal-exists" any day of the week.

Drop me in a vast, complex, daunting wilderness with just a few basic tools and challenge me to find my way home.

THAT is Alchemy.

You're content to warm yourself by the fire you started with flint-and-steel demanding that someone actually produce this famous Zippo lighter they've been describing ...

... when, in fact, the "warmth" doesn't come from a campfire at all, but your love, compassion and empathy for all you see, feel, hear, touch and smell.

THAT is "golden."

In other words, the destination is already acquired and even understood ...

... perfection.

The adventure is in the process.

THAT is Alchemy.

lwowl
03-16-2014, 07:32 PM
when the chemist and historian of science Lawrence Principe rediscovered Robert Boyle's eye-witness account of the transmutation of lead into gold by means of a small amount of such transmuting powder (donated by an anonymous wandering "adept" who visited him, whom Principe suspects was either the alchemist who called himself "Theodorus Mundanus" or his assistant), his admission regarding an "explanation" as to what made Boyle become convinced of its reality was simply "I wish I knew":

http://www.jhu.edu/jhumag/0299web/glitter.html

Because there is simply no way of easily "explaining" it away. This guy was not any "dreamer" or "ignoramus" but one of the pillars of modern science. In fact, it is very ironic that one of the "fathers" of modern chemistry, which holds the preclusion of the transmutation of any "element" into another by means of "chemical" reactions as one of its central tenets, was in fact 100% convinced through ocular demonstration that the Philosophers' Stone was very real.

Interesting article about Principe on Boyle. Especially:

“Principe was startled, during his investigation, to find unpublished documents revealing Boyle's belief that the Philosopher's Stone would enable him to communicate with angels. In a fragment of an unpublished dialogue, Boyle wrote that finding the Stone might prove an inlet to "the attainment of some intercourse with good spirits." If the Stone could demonstrate the existence of "rational spirits," would that not demonstrate the existence of God? Boyle believed, says Principe, that the Stone might be able to transmute more than gold. It might transmute atheists. Boyle subscribed to the Stone's existence, says Principe, because there was no good reason for him not to believe it, and because his theology, which was never divorced or separate from his science, required him to believe it.”

This hits on what some few of us have been proposing all along. The Grand Elixir or Stone puts one in a privileged position vis the Universe, to paraphrase a statement supposedly made by Fulcanelli in “Morning of the Magicians.”

The Elixir is Enlightening. Many of the old adepts experienced this according to the capacity and focus of knowledge in their times. So they often relate their experiences of the illumination in Christian motifs and beliefs, especially when they seem to go off on a religious tangent. What they called by the name of God may not be sufficient for many of us now days. We want a more detailed explanation.

I know of no better detailed philosophical explanation from the old ones for the Illumination than that offered by Robert Grosseteste (ca. 1170-1253), “On Light or the Beginning of Forms.” If he were alive now surely he would be a Quantum physicist:)

JDP
03-17-2014, 01:45 AM
JDP ...

I've spent the last half hour or forty-five minutes going over this thread and examining your posts and others' reaction to them. No, I haven't done an in-depth study of your statements, neither am I compelled to. The gist is more than apparent.

It is clear that you are -- not just apparently, but in fact -- an empiricist of the highest order. You are a "show me" scientist. You are a "practicalist."

Now, there's nothing wrong with that ... let me make myself clear. None of that reference makes you a "bad" person or even one worthy of the slightest scorn.

However, that perspective, meaning the literal place from which you perceive, has little place, use or purpose in this forum.

What you fail to understand is the fact that Alchemy is not about chemistry in any way, shape or form. It it nearly irrelevant.

Now, I'll "empirically" define "nearly" by saying that it may be five to ten percent relevant.

Repeatedly throughout this thread you have said time-and-time again, "show me" in a myriad of syntax.

That is not Alchemy.

Literal "gold" is not Alchemy. You demand that golden nugget to be placed in your hand. You demand the process to be explained, step-by-step in order for you to replicate the process to see, touch, smell and taste the results. It must "exist" in your five-senses world. The esoteric must be proven.

You have it backwards ... perhaps even upside-down and inside-out.

Everything you feel, see, hear, touch, taste and/or perceive in any way, shape or form existed FIRST in the non-physical ...

... not the other way around.

Alchemy is not the "science" of proving the non-physical, but the Exploration of the Physical from the Esoteric Perspective.

My physical body is a PROJECTION of my non-physical, eternal, esoteric, ethereal body ... and the word "body" is in-and-of-itself misleading, but a necessary fallacy of physical communication.

Our references ... our personal perspectives ... could not be more polar opposites.

You sit, on your side of the computer, in your physical body exploring your Physical Universe with your Physical Laws and your hands-on tangibility, requiring your ocular proof and your empirical physical sensory repetition.

I sit, on my side of the computer, in a "sack-of-goo" that is a tiny reflection of my greater self that functions as a "lens" to perceive a narrow focus of a few wavelengths of combined energy that generates a set of circumstances some call "reality" ... when, in fact, actual reality is far too complex for this simple lens to perceive, conceive or even communicate within the highly limited range of waveforms.

You stand on a small hill on a tiny island, surrounded by an ocean that covers a speck of dust that is blowing in a wisp of a cloud in an obscure corner of the orgasmic multidimensional typhoon of the Universe.

I am blowing on that wind looking down on your tiny island.

Bold statement on my part.

Does it make me better than you?

No.

It merely makes my perspective different.

Does it make me right and you wrong?

No ...

... especially since we're exploring the same "space."

What it DOES say, however, is that your perspective is self-limiting. You demand that your five senses provide you with proof of the existence of things beyond your five senses.

Think about that.

Do you even need to think about that?

It's a self-defeating hypothesis.

Whatever an Alchemist discovers, it is not an "invention" ... for, in fact, there is no such thing as "invention" ... creating something that didn't exist before.

Everything that exists, has existed or will exist, has existed since the moment of Creation. All the rules were written in that Moment. Both the Alpha and the Omega coexisted at that Sacred Moment and continue to coexist at this very moment ... and everything in between.

We "live" in that in-between. We explore it and that "It" is the It that is All of Creation.

"Show me" can either be a Supreme Arrogance, or an Utter Humility, and either is totally dependent on the perspective of the Observer.

Having a miniscule, pathetic inkling of the size and scope of the Universe and Eternity, I take a position of Utter Humility.

I don't wake up each morning stating that I know what I know and to know more someone's going to have to damned well prove it to me.

I wake up every morning saying, "Holy crap. This is unbelievable. This is shocking. This is THE Eternal Adventure Park. THIS makes living wondrous, exciting and a True Adventure, as well as an astonishingly Precious Gift from the astounding vastness of Creation Itself."

No ... I do not need proof of the ethereal, I do not need to know that Love "exists" in all its forms. I can FEEL that.

I'll take the "interacted physical as it relates to the ethereal" ... the "ether-real" ... over the "prove-to-me-the-ethereal-exists" any day of the week.

Drop me in a vast, complex, daunting wilderness with just a few basic tools and challenge me to find my way home.

THAT is Alchemy.

You're content to warm yourself by the fire you started with flint-and-steel demanding that someone actually produce this famous Zippo lighter they've been describing ...

... when, in fact, the "warmth" doesn't come from a campfire at all, but your love, compassion and empathy for all you see, feel, hear, touch and smell.

THAT is "golden."

In other words, the destination is already acquired and even understood ...

... perfection.

The adventure is in the process.

THAT is Alchemy.

Yes, I am an "empiricist". I also have to strongly disagree with your interpretation of what alchemy supposedly "is" and "isn't". I guide myself by what the bulk of the old literature on the subject says and claims, and it is most certainly heavily concerned with preparing the Philosophers' Stone and achieving transmutations. So yes, alchemy has always been primarily concerned about that. Just like it happens with most modern historians of science when they have to deal with the "spiritualist" and Jungian interpretations of alchemy, I find it amazing that anyone could really try to deny this when it is so evident throughout the old literature that this (as well as the reputed medicinal/longevity properties of the Stone) was always alchemy's main goal. All the other stuff is incidental and variable (the product of any particular alchemist's personal religious and philosophical beliefs) from one author to another, but what does not vary is this objective.

JDP
03-17-2014, 01:53 AM
Interesting article about Principe on Boyle. Especially:

“Principe was startled, during his investigation, to find unpublished documents revealing Boyle's belief that the Philosopher's Stone would enable him to communicate with angels. In a fragment of an unpublished dialogue, Boyle wrote that finding the Stone might prove an inlet to "the attainment of some intercourse with good spirits." If the Stone could demonstrate the existence of "rational spirits," would that not demonstrate the existence of God? Boyle believed, says Principe, that the Stone might be able to transmute more than gold. It might transmute atheists. Boyle subscribed to the Stone's existence, says Principe, because there was no good reason for him not to believe it, and because his theology, which was never divorced or separate from his science, required him to believe it.”

This hits on what some few of us have been proposing all along. The Grand Elixir or Stone puts one in a privileged position vis the Universe, to paraphrase a statement supposedly made by Fulcanelli in “Morning of the Magicians.”

The Elixir is Enlightening. Many of the old adepts experienced this according to the capacity and focus of knowledge in their times. So they often relate their experiences of the illumination in Christian motifs and beliefs, especially when they seem to go off on a religious tangent. What they called by the name of God may not be sufficient for many of us now days. We want a more detailed explanation.

I know of no better detailed philosophical explanation from the old ones for the Illumination than that offered by Robert Grosseteste (ca. 1170-1253), “On Light or the Beginning of Forms.” If he were alive now surely he would be a Quantum physicist:)

Yes, but Boyle never seems to have had confirmation of those other claims about the Stone. Those remained his own personal speculations (based on the claims of some writers who attributed a lot strange properties to the Stone.) But what is truly interesting from our modern point of view is that Boyle did get the confirmation about the transmuting properties of the Stone, and not through theoretical arguments and disquisitions, but through an ocular demonstration that resulted in a certain mass of molten lead being turned into gold right in front of him by means of a much smaller mass of a powder supplied by an anonymous foreigner who visited him in his lab (according to Principe's suspicions, this foreigner was either "Theodorus Mundanus" or his assistant. At about the same time as the Boyle transmutation, "Mundanus" also convinced Edmund Dickinson, King Charles II's physician, of the same thing, not once but actually twice!)

DonSweet
03-17-2014, 06:52 AM
Nice try on the deflection and the insult, JDP, but I've just had a delightful evening of skiing and it's particularly difficult to rattle me at the moment.

"Oh crap. Another one of those damned spiritual bastards."

... an interpolation, granted, but the meaning was empirically crystalline.

As I put fingertips to keyboard, in an attempt to keep the mayonnaise at a minimum as I chew this delightful chicken sandwich ... two delights in one evening, be still my heart ... I will attempt to be both civil and thorough, however healthfully brief.

It is likely, no, strike that, a literal imperative, that we will need to agree to disagree ... robustly, enthusiastically ... and likely terminally. It may be best that we never even speak.

Oddly, I am willing to discuss and incorporate any ... and every ... aspect of empirical science into my Alchemical studies, wherein conversely, you apparently reject entirely anything outside empirical science, and equally apparently refuse to even broach the subject. It's science, or it's nothing.

How open-minded.

Sorry ... just a minor snipe.

I noticed that you quoted my entire post, not singling out a single phrase to challenge. If you didn't notice, the entire post exists in its entirety right below yours. Seems a waste to take up all that space with repetition, yes?

I suppose it'll be an entire waste of these mayo-tainted fingertips to ask, where do you feel your intellect comes from? or what aspect of your physiology houses your intuition? or at which point does one lobe of the brain interact with which hormone to produce which substance to stimulate which nerve cluster to draw your breath at a gorgeous sunset?

Yeah ... better avoid those questions.

Like, what tactile pathway evokes a response from which series of synapses to make you break down and cry when you hold your first child for the first time?

Not relevant to Alchemy ... right?

Unfortunately, the pots-and-pans and processes you so treasure in your ancient writings have little to do with The Philosopher's Stone. They are not the means to the end. They are a REFLECTION of it, they are a metaphorical manifestation, but they are not "the thing" ... but then, these words fall on deaf, perhaps even offended ears ... technically eyeballs in the case of an online forum.

You may never accept this, and no one may ever be able to "prove" this to you, but "Understanding" is the means to the end, not "Knowledge."

Well, technically, there's a bit of technical knowledge involved since we are manifest in a material existence ...

... but ...

Any True Philosopher's Stone will only ever manifest in "reality" if it is manifest in the heart of the Alchemist first. It must be understood entirely, completely and utterly to exist -- before it exists -- not merely whipped up in a pot (or flask).

Despite what you claim to have read, the goal is not a recipe, it is a state of being. That state can only be achieved by the Alchemist -- which is in NO WAY SHAPE OR FORM an empirical chemist -- if the Alchemist comes to understand the Nature of Universe they find themselves participating in.

You cannot ... repeat, cannot ... assert yourself over the Universe. You can only seek affirmation BY it in your Alchemical pursuits.

But then this is "foreign-speak" to you ... likely repugnant.

Your answer is in your recipes?

By the time you die ... and you will ... some miniscule aspect of this has some small chance of becoming apparent to you ... if you're lucky and open your empirical stone of a heart.

In the meantime, feel free to bang around with your pots and pans.

Good luck with that.

JDP
03-17-2014, 04:59 PM
Nice try on the deflection and the insult, JDP, but I've just had a delightful evening of skiing and it's particularly difficult to rattle me at the moment.

"Oh crap. Another one of those damned spiritual bastards."

... an interpolation, granted, but the meaning was empirically crystalline.

As I put fingertips to keyboard, in an attempt to keep the mayonnaise at a minimum as I chew this delightful chicken sandwich ... two delights in one evening, be still my heart ... I will attempt to be both civil and thorough, however healthfully brief.

It is likely, no, strike that, a literal imperative, that we will need to agree to disagree ... robustly, enthusiastically ... and likely terminally. It may be best that we never even speak.

Oddly, I am willing to discuss and incorporate any ... and every ... aspect of empirical science into my Alchemical studies, wherein conversely, you apparently reject entirely anything outside empirical science, and equally apparently refuse to even broach the subject. It's science, or it's nothing.

How open-minded.

Sorry ... just a minor snipe.

I noticed that you quoted my entire post, not singling out a single phrase to challenge. If you didn't notice, the entire post exists in its entirety right below yours. Seems a waste to take up all that space with repetition, yes?

I suppose it'll be an entire waste of these mayo-tainted fingertips to ask, where do you feel your intellect comes from? or what aspect of your physiology houses your intuition? or at which point does one lobe of the brain interact with which hormone to produce which substance to stimulate which nerve cluster to draw your breath at a gorgeous sunset?

Yeah ... better avoid those questions.

Like, what tactile pathway evokes a response from which series of synapses to make you break down and cry when you hold your first child for the first time?

Not relevant to Alchemy ... right?

Unfortunately, the pots-and-pans and processes you so treasure in your ancient writings have little to do with The Philosopher's Stone. They are not the means to the end. They are a REFLECTION of it, they are a metaphorical manifestation, but they are not "the thing" ... but then, these words fall on deaf, perhaps even offended ears ... technically eyeballs in the case of an online forum.

You may never accept this, and no one may ever be able to "prove" this to you, but "Understanding" is the means to the end, not "Knowledge."

Well, technically, there's a bit of technical knowledge involved since we are manifest in a material existence ...

... but ...

Any True Philosopher's Stone will only ever manifest in "reality" if it is manifest in the heart of the Alchemist first. It must be understood entirely, completely and utterly to exist -- before it exists -- not merely whipped up in a pot (or flask).

Despite what you claim to have read, the goal is not a recipe, it is a state of being. That state can only be achieved by the Alchemist -- which is in NO WAY SHAPE OR FORM an empirical chemist -- if the Alchemist comes to understand the Nature of Universe they find themselves participating in.

You cannot ... repeat, cannot ... assert yourself over the Universe. You can only seek affirmation BY it in your Alchemical pursuits.

But then this is "foreign-speak" to you ... likely repugnant.

Your answer is in your recipes?

By the time you die ... and you will ... some miniscule aspect of this has some small chance of becoming apparent to you ... if you're lucky and open your empirical stone of a heart.

In the meantime, feel free to bang around with your pots and pans.

Good luck with that.

No "deflection" or "insults", juts pointing out that you apparently base your concept of what alchemy supposedly is or isn't on your personal beliefs/speculations rather on what the bulk of the old literature says.

Yes, it's "foreign-speak" because it has not been proven by anyone that alchemy really relies on some "state of being" of the operator. Again, if that was true, why the persistent need for all the code-words and secrecy? You could just publish the whole process in plain words and let those who achieve the right "state of being" also achieve the Stone. Everyone else will fail no matter what. No need to bother with so much mysterious stuff. This is all very similar to those who claim that there is a "Divine permission" that is essential to success in alchemy. But no, it is in fact quite the opposite of what one would expect if such claims were really true and the people who made them 100% believed them for real. Alchemical literature is riddled with purposeful occultation regarding the matters to work with, something completely unnecessary if such claims were really true.

Jerry
03-17-2014, 06:28 PM
That's good enough if you are trying to find out what is the chemical composition of the byproducts from its distillation, but here the issue is whether these byproducts can fit the descriptions and properties of what the alchemists attribute to the products they obtained by the distillation of a mysterious substance or mixture/compound they keep hiding under a barrage of code-words with the deliberate intention to make it more difficult to figure out what substance/substances they were using. For that you need more substantial amounts of these byproducts to attempt to repeat their descriptions of the procedures.

I don’t think there is any question of the product from distillation. It’s called white wine. Unless it is red, then it is called red wine. When the wine is concentrated by distillation, it is called aqua regia. With the king’s water they torture the virgin (bane Marie) in their water bath. The terminology isn’t important. It is the concepts the words represent which have to be understood.



That's what anyone with at least some basic education in modern chemistry and physics would tend to conclude, but the problem is how persistent were these claims, and not just among the alchemists themselves. Even more puzzling/intriguing to modern ears are all the eye-witness accounts of people other than the alchemists themselves who became 100% convinced of the reality of this "tincture" that could transmute many times its own weight of base metals into silver and gold.

1000 X 0 = 100% convinced.


For example, when the chemist and historian of science Lawrence Principe rediscovered Robert Boyle's eye-witness account of the transmutation of lead into gold by means of a small amount of such transmuting powder (donated by an anonymous wandering "adept" who visited him, whom Principe suspects was either the alchemist who called himself "Theodorus Mundanus" or his assistant), his admission regarding an "explanation" as to what made Boyle become convinced of its reality was simply "I wish I knew":

It is also possible that there is no transmuting powder. It was created to satisfy the demand of the people who thought the objective of alchemy was making gold and silver
I would think Principe and Newman would have figured this out. They both seem to be well educated and nice guys. They both fell into a trap thinking that because a shoemaker may have found the Stone, making shoes is Alchemy. There’s an old Bulgarian saying, “A shoemaker goes around with no shoes”.

I’m sure the Philosopher’s Stone is real. The vulgar claims are not. The Philosopher’s Stone was known to the Antient Egyptians, Jews, Greeks, Assyrians, and probably known all over the ancient world.

Marginal Note: It seems to be a common practice to substitute a letter in a word in the older alchemical literature so the “c” becomes a “t” or the “t” a “c” to confuse the reader. That would make the first operation calcination or rather more correctly caltination (to make yellow, or make yellow by calcination).

And the letter “j” means day. So ij means one day.

Have a nice one.

III
03-17-2014, 08:44 PM
Hi JDP,


The alchemy, as I know it is 100% about construction of spiritual gold, ones own eternal soul-being. That is just as "impossible" as the physical lab results until one changes ones self to exist in a version of the world in which it can occur. Now that is one way to try to plainly say it. Look at what you care not finding. Perhaps a consideration is that ones assumptions and "should be" constructs are non-predictive. I understand your drive to "find" the "secret" plainly laid out. So there is lots of room for false assumptions and misunderstandings there. Consider that your activity so far is a search for a reliable method of practice. I would suggest that the "search" is different from the practice of Alchemy after one has learned the methods of practice. Actually performing Alchemy in one's life, or maybe making ones whole life into an Alchemy, is a whole different ball game from the perpetual search.

Hellin Hermetist
03-17-2014, 09:15 PM
All you guys who believe that alchemy has some secret spiritual meaning and nothing to do with lab work, in which authors and writings do you base such opinions? Another point I want to mention is the following. Most of the good authors leaves their secret cabale and speak in quite plainly language when they want to describe the final stages of the work, as they say that if you have reached that point and you have accomplished the stone they shall not hide its uses from you. These final stages are multiplication, or solution of the already accomplished stone in its own water and fixation of the compound to increase the power of the stone. And finally fermentation or melting of the accomplished stone with common gold in an open fire in a crucible for three days and nights (most authors call that stage work of the three days) to make it able to produce metallic transmutation.

As we can see when the stone has been accomplished the authors leave their parabolic and figurative style and gives precise instructions about the work you have to do from that point on. Do you think that under those instructions they again hide some spiritual secret and they are trying to confuse their readers by describing quite plainly those lab procedures?

Hellin Hermetist
03-17-2014, 09:21 PM
There doesn’t seem to be any scientific basis of how all base metals can turn into silver (Ag) and gold (Au). I’m sure the transmutation aspect is a ruse, dead end, and unachievable objective designed to lead people astray. Of course, you never be sure so keep trying.


Transmutation of base metals to silver and gold doesnt have any scientific base, and at the same time it is the less exaggerated of the claims made by the old alchemists. The growing of metallic trees are much more exaggerated and even more curious from them both is the creation of spectres of plants and animals which are raised from the burned ashes of their bodies.

lwowl
03-17-2014, 09:29 PM
Yes, but Boyle never seems to have had confirmation of those other claims about the Stone. Those remained his own personal speculations (based on the claims of some writers who attributed a lot strange properties to the Stone.) But what is truly interesting from our modern point of view is that Boyle did get the confirmation about the transmuting properties of the Stone, and not through theoretical arguments and disquisitions, but through an ocular demonstration that resulted in a certain mass of molten lead being turned into gold right in front of him by means of a much smaller mass of a powder supplied by an anonymous foreigner who visited him in his lab (according to Principe's suspicions, this foreigner was either "Theodorus Mundanus" or his assistant. At about the same time as the Boyle transmutation, "Mundanus" also convinced Edmund Dickinson, King Charles II's physician, of the same thing, not once but actually twice!)

Still you are basing your belief as to the confirmation of transmutation of base metals into Au in this instance on what Boyle wrote that he saw. You believe him on that I assume. Because he said he saw it.

It would have been difficult for Boyle to have confirmation of "spiritual" effects of the Stone since he was given a different demonstration. He never made the Stone himself so how could he confirm anything about it other than what he witnessed. Unfortunately eye witnesses don't hold up too well in court in legal proceedings. Memory has been proven unreliable by the legal industry.

So it would be better to inquire what Theodorus Mandanus wrote about it; if he was the person that entertained Boyle with the transmutation demonstration.


Yes, it's "foreign-speak" because it has not been proven by anyone that alchemy really relies on some "state of being" of the operator. Again, if that was true, why the persistent need for all the code-words and secrecy? You could just publish the whole process in plain words and let those who achieve the right "state of being" also achieve the Stone. Everyone else will fail no matter what. No need to bother with so much mysterious stuff. This is all very similar to those who claim that there is a "Divine permission" that is essential to success in alchemy. But no, it is in fact quite the opposite of what one would expect if such claims were really true and the people who made them 100% believed them for real. Alchemical literature is riddled with purposeful occultation regarding the matters to work with, something completely unnecessary if such claims were really true.

Many of the adepts have written that one needs the grace of God to succeed, must be worthy, etc. They certainly thought the "state of being" was a necessary component.

What they were horrified of was the thought that knowledge of the Stone might become commonplace and the ignorant might have it thus ruining the world for all. That has been expressed by Newton and others to mean, that if the method were to become common, gold would be worth less than a penny.

In reality, if the cheapest most plentiful metal on earth were transmuted into gold, and gold instantly became worthless, it would be replaced with trade items of greater value and the economy would continue on. The wealthy own and trade in many things of great value; gold is just a convenient item to set trade value on.

The real problem comes in when the masses have the Stone and live as long as the adepts. Let's say 1000 years. People will not die and still they will have more babies, and they won't die either. Overpopulation will be the cause of our extinction.

Perhaps that is what the Adepts were really afraid of:) Perhaps that is why they hid their processes so cleverly. It makes more sense than a fear that the gold economy would collapse. In fact it already has. The global economy is based not on gold but paper debts or credits.

Krisztian
03-18-2014, 01:53 PM
What they were horrified of was the thought that knowledge of the Stone might become commonplace and the ignorant might have it thus ruining the world for all. That has been expressed by Newton and others to mean, that if the method were to become common, gold would be worth less than a penny.

In reality, if the cheapest most plentiful metal on earth were transmuted into gold, and gold instantly became worthless, it would be replaced with trade items of greater value and the economy would continue on. The wealthy own and trade in many things of great value; gold is just a convenient item to set trade value on.

The real problem comes in when the masses have the Stone and live as long as the adepts. Let's say 1000 years. People will not die and still they will have more babies, and they won't die either. Overpopulation will be the cause of our extinction.

Perhaps that is what the Adepts were really afraid of:) Perhaps that is why they hid their processes so cleverly. It makes more sense than a fear that the gold economy would collapse. In fact it already has. The global economy is based not on gold but paper debts or credits.

All of that could be.

My take on it is that the Philosopher's Stone is dangerous in the wrong hands. What I mean is, not for the usual reasons. It amplifies the one who ingests it, what would it be for the populace if their thoughts were amplified? Horror picture show? Fears, insecurities, the instability of emotions manifesting. I mean, instantaneously. It's on the minds of the adepts not to give "kids" a sword they can't properly use.

You want to save the populace from taking it, until one day they evolve to a point where they can live with their emotions and thoughts normally.

DonSweet
03-18-2014, 02:14 PM
Hellin …

Let's start with a couple of rudiments.

First, it is not called "The Chemist's Stone" for a reason. It is not merely the result of chemistry, but "al-chemical" processes, which are not empirical in nature. That's why there's two different words with two different meanings. It is called The Philosopher's Stone due to the fact that there is an intangible philosophical aspect to it … "tangible" owing to the physical senses, to which philosophical matters cannot apply.

Second, one must also take into account the aspect of Alchemy that is not the end goal … and that is the process itself. One cannot help but observe that Alchemy intimately involves a long, complex often convoluted process. This is well beyond the one simple goal of the production of a single product, The Philosopher's Stone. In other words, it is not a singular pursuit. It is an individuated pursuit wholly contingent on the participation of the observer/producer, the Alchemists themselves.

No Alchemist, no Alchemy.

Alchemy is the interaction of consciousness -- a non-physical state -- with physical processes that can only be manipulated through non-physical interaction.

This interaction is not merely "intellect" -- a collection of facts applied -- but the indefinable aspects of intuition, creativity and interpretation.

Remember, these are "rudiments." We are in Nursery School here. One can never stray far from one's roots, regardless of how one might reject them.

Now …

As for these not being my personal ponderings …

Paracelsus believed the cosmos is fashioned from three spiritual substances: the tria prima of mercury, sulfur, and salt.

These are not "physical" properties, but the non-physical properties of soul (sulphur) and spirit (mercury) … with the salt (body) possessing both spiritual and physical implications.

Wiki states, which is yet to be challenged or edited otherwise:

"Alchemy differs significantly from modern science in its inclusion of Hermetic principles and practices related to mythology, magic, religion, and spirituality."

Further, in relation to Hermeticism:

"In the eyes of a variety of esoteric and Hermetic practitioners, the heart of alchemy is spiritual."

"Internal" Alchemy is unquestionably an integral part of Alchemy itself. And the "internal" is defined -- widely, broadly, but with a fundament -- as one's higher self or spiritual self, not merely emotional or psychological.

Clearly, based solely on these few observations, of which there are countless others, Alchemy defined as purely empirical, meaning solely based in five-senses observation, possessing no esoteric elements whatsoever is singularly and definitively false. It merely becomes "chemistry."

Chemistry that seeks The Philosopher's Stone cannot be redefined as Alchemy.

The chemist that seeks an Alchemical product could never produce an Alchemical product due to the fact that elements required to produce the product fall outside the limitations of chemistry.

One must also keep in mind that the progression of time does not automatically produce a superior process. One cannot claim that chemistry, having arisen from Alchemy, is "better" merely because it came later.

As is evidenced by several recent empirical observations, conventional physics and chemistry are acknowledging an unquestioned connection and reliance on the vibrational, non-physical Universal laws spirituality has been discussing for millennia.

Conventional physics and chemistry are proving to be dead-end, full cycle branches of evolution … full cycle being defined as having come back to principles from which it departed centuries ago.

More simply put …

The mere metaphors alone, as defined by the several, if not uncounted, Adepts and Masters of The Sacred Art of Old in-and-of-themselves departs Alchemy from chemistry … or, more accurately, departs chemistry from Alchemy.

Is the empirical chemist wrong? Is the chemist "evil"? Is the chemist misguided?

No.

The empirical chemist is merely self-limiting and incomplete.

Chemistry … a non-esoteric offshoot of Alchemy … is a limited sized vessel with a self-defined termination.

Alchemy has no such limitations, as it is clear that "perfection" cannot exist on the physical plane.

JDP
03-18-2014, 02:25 PM
Hi JDP,


The alchemy, as I know it is 100% about construction of spiritual gold, ones own eternal soul-being. That is just as "impossible" as the physical lab results until one changes ones self to exist in a version of the world in which it can occur. Now that is one way to try to plainly say it. Look at what you care not finding. Perhaps a consideration is that ones assumptions and "should be" constructs are non-predictive. I understand your drive to "find" the "secret" plainly laid out. So there is lots of room for false assumptions and misunderstandings there. Consider that your activity so far is a search for a reliable method of practice. I would suggest that the "search" is different from the practice of Alchemy after one has learned the methods of practice. Actually performing Alchemy in one's life, or maybe making ones whole life into an Alchemy, is a whole different ball game from the perpetual search.

The idea that alchemy is some sort of "internal" process is erroneous. It's mostly based on 19th century "spiritualist" interpretations of alchemy. The alchemists were concerned with preparing a very real and tangible substance which they claimed is able to turn many times its own weight of base metals into silver and gold, and that it also has remarkable medicinal and life-extending properties. There just isn't much more to it. Anyone trying to present alchemy as some sort of "spiritual quest" that had no interest at all in making artificial precious metals, curing diseases and extending life is simply indulging in his own desire for it to be something else than it plainly presents itself as in the old literature. People who sustain such ideas should stick to spiritualism and metaphysics rather than alchemy.

JDP
03-18-2014, 02:40 PM
All you guys who believe that alchemy has some secret spiritual meaning and nothing to do with lab work, in which authors and writings do you base such opinions?

Such ideas are mostly based on romanticized views of alchemy with origins in the 19th century, like those of Hitchcock and Atwood. Even more critical "occultists" of those times like A.E. Waite had already debunked such views, it did not have to wait until modern historians of science for that to happen.


Another point I want to mention is the following. Most of the good authors leaves their secret cabale and speak in quite plainly language when they want to describe the final stages of the work, as they say that if you have reached that point and you have accomplished the stone they shall not hide its uses from you. These final stages are multiplication, or solution of the already accomplished stone in its own water and fixation of the compound to increase the power of the stone. And finally fermentation or melting of the accomplished stone with common gold in an open fire in a crucible for three days and nights (most authors call that stage work of the three days) to make it able to produce metallic transmutation.

As we can see when the stone has been accomplished the authors leave their parabolic and figurative style and gives precise instructions about the work you have to do from that point on. Do you think that under those instructions they again hide some spiritual secret and they are trying to confuse their readers by describing quite plainly those lab procedures?

Indeed. In fact, if alchemy really was what people who hold such ideas say it is, it would be one of the most contemptible things in history. Claiming to achieve some sort of "spiritual" revelation or realization and then purposefully hiding it from most of the world and misleading people into thinking it is about transmuting metals so that they waste their time and money on something entirely different would pretty much make the alchemists one of the most devious, lying, evil and sadistic people in history. It implies that they would relish seeing other people stay in complete and total ignorance of the supposed "spiritual" truth they had discovered (which goes against the teachings of actual religions and spiritual movements, which openly explain their beliefs to everyone) and on top of that causing them untold amounts of anguish, pain, anxiety, suffering, toil, expenditure, etc. by making them waste time and money with things (laboratory procedures, manipulation of substances) that have no connection whatsoever with what they really supposedly achieved.

JDP
03-18-2014, 02:45 PM
Transmutation of base metals to silver and gold doesnt have any scientific base, and at the same time it is the less exaggerated of the claims made by the old alchemists. The growing of metallic trees are much more exaggerated and even more curious from them both is the creation of spectres of plants and animals which are raised from the burned ashes of their bodies.

Yes, indeed, but in their defense, the majority of alchemists did not indulge in such "palingenetic" claims.

DonSweet
03-18-2014, 02:57 PM
JDP ...

You are a chemist, not an Alchemist.

Give it a rest.

JDP
03-18-2014, 03:12 PM
Still you are basing your belief as to the confirmation of transmutation of base metals into Au in this instance on what Boyle wrote that he saw. You believe him on that I assume. Because he said he saw it.

It would have been difficult for Boyle to have confirmation of "spiritual" effects of the Stone since he was given a different demonstration. He never made the Stone himself so how could he confirm anything about it other than what he witnessed. Unfortunately eye witnesses don't hold up too well in court in legal proceedings. Memory has been proven unreliable by the legal industry.

That's the point. Apparently someone was able to confirm for him the claims about the Stone being able to transmute metals. However, we have no reason to believe (until someone proves otherwise by finding some "lost" document showing the contrary) that anyone was able to confirm for him those other claims about the Stone supposedly being able to do those other things.


Many of the adepts have written that one needs the grace of God to succeed, must be worthy, etc. They certainly thought the "state of being" was a necessary component.

Yes, but notice how different is what they wrote from what they preached. If this "divine grace" is so essential for success, then why bother with all the secrecy and mysteries and code-words and the like? Their actions betray something quite different from what they preached.


What they were horrified of was the thought that knowledge of the Stone might become commonplace and the ignorant might have it thus ruining the world for all. That has been expressed by Newton and others to mean, that if the method were to become common, gold would be worth less than a penny.

Indeed, but if alchemy was really about some sort of "spiritual" revelation or achievement then it does not make any sense whatsoever how could it "ruin" the world. In fact, it's the opposite, it would change the world for the better, not the worse. One then would have to declare the alchemists as one of the most devious people in history for hiding it and keeping most people in perpetual ignorance of it, and on top of that misleading them into carrying fruitless operations with matter, something that has nothing to do with their supposed achievements. However, when you plainly see what the alchemists were really afraid of (gold and silver being devalued and becoming as common as lead, iron, etc., everyone wanting to become rich and abandoning other less lucrative but still very important jobs, like farming, or fishing, etc.), you also realize that what they plainly wrote about (making the Philosophers' Stone, transmuting base metals) is what they really mean. No "hidden" meanings here. What you see is what you get.


In reality, if the cheapest most plentiful metal on earth were transmuted into gold, and gold instantly became worthless, it would be replaced with trade items of greater value and the economy would continue on. The wealthy own and trade in many things of great value; gold is just a convenient item to set trade value on.

Easier said than done. And at the time of the alchemists gold and silver were even more important for the economy than today. Forging coin of the realm with cheap metallic alloys that looked like gold or silver could be penalized even by death back then! That's how serious gold and silver were taken for the well-being of a nation.


The real problem comes in when the masses have the Stone and live as long as the adepts. Let's say 1000 years. People will not die and still they will have more babies, and they won't die either. Overpopulation will be the cause of our extinction.

Perhaps that is what the Adepts were really afraid of:) Perhaps that is why they hid their processes so cleverly. It makes more sense than a fear that the gold economy would collapse. In fact it already has.

Even though that is also a logical conclusion for us nowadays in an already overpopulated planet, this worry was not really in the mind of most alchemists. In fact, at this moment I can't remember even one of them making such a remark, unlike the clearly expressed worries about gold and silver becoming cheap and common that many of them make, or the alchemist fearing for his life and freedom because of greedy powerful people would want to force them to work for them producing artificial gold and silver, and so forth.


The global economy is based not on gold but paper debts or credits.

That may be the case today (some would still argue that it is really just an illusion, and that "paper money" is not really worth a rot, while in time of economic crisis gold, silver and platinum still retain their status as precious metals and are a safer investment), but back then the economies of most civilizations relied heavily on silver and gold.

JDP
03-18-2014, 03:13 PM
JDP ...

You are a chemist, not an Alchemist.

Give it a rest.

DonSweet...

You are a spiritualist/metaphysicist, not an alchemist or chymist.

Give it a rest.

DonSweet
03-19-2014, 03:46 AM
You say that as if it's a "bad" thing.

**smile**

"Don't bother me with facts, my mind is made up."

All too familiar.

DonSweet
03-19-2014, 04:39 AM
Merriam-Webster's Dictionary -

phi·los·o·phy

noun \fə-ˈlä-s(ə-)fē\

: the study of ideas about knowledge, truth, the nature and meaning of life, etc.

: a particular set of ideas about knowledge, truth, the nature and meaning of life, etc.

: a set of ideas about how to do something or how to live

Full definition:

1 -
a (1) : all learning exclusive of technical precepts and practical arts
(2) : the sciences and liberal arts exclusive of medicine, law, and theology <a doctor of philosophy>
(3) : the 4-year college course of a major seminary
b (1) archaic : physical science
(2) : ethics
c : a discipline comprising as its core logic, aesthetics, ethics, metaphysics, and epistemology

2 -
a : pursuit of wisdom
b : a search for a general understanding of values and reality by chiefly speculative rather than observational means
c : an analysis of the grounds of and concepts expressing fundamental beliefs

3 -
a : a system of philosophical concepts
b : a theory underlying or regarding a sphere of activity or thought <the philosophy of war>

4 -
a : the most basic beliefs, concepts, and attitudes of an individual or group
b : calmness of temper and judgment befitting a philosopher

Examples of PHILOSOPHY

Her degree is in philosophy and religion.
The group eventually split over conflicting political philosophies.
Her main cooking philosophy is to use only fresh ingredients.

phi·los·o·pher

noun \fə-ˈlä-s(ə-)fər\

: a person who studies ideas about knowledge, truth, the nature and meaning of life, etc. : a person who studies philosophy

chem·is·try

noun \ˈke-mə-strē\

1: a science that deals with the composition, structure, and properties of substances and with the transformations that they undergo

2 -
a : the composition and chemical properties of a substance <the chemistry of iron>
b : chemical processes and phenomena (as of an organism) <blood chemistry>

3 -
a : a strong mutual attraction, attachment, or sympathy <they have a special chemistry>
b : interaction between people working together; specifically : such interaction when harmonious or effective

sci·ence

noun \ˈsī-ən(t)s\

1: the state of knowing : knowledge as distinguished from ignorance or misunderstanding

2 -
a : a department of systematized knowledge as an object of study <the science of theology>
b : something (as a sport or technique) that may be studied or learned like systematized knowledge <have it down to a science>

3 -
a : knowledge or a system of knowledge covering general truths or the operation of general laws especially as obtained and tested through scientific method
b : such knowledge or such a system of knowledge concerned with the physical world and its phenomena : natural science

4: a system or method reconciling practical ends with scientific laws <cooking is both a science and an art>

I don't know about anyone else that's reading either this thread, or even the entire forum, but I speak, write and understand English.

I'm sure there's at least a few that simply don't have a grasp of the language.

Google search for "The Chemist's Stone" brought up references to Harry Potter movies.

DonSweet
03-19-2014, 07:38 AM
For those of you who may be wondering, I'm no Hippie. I'm not a tree-hugger and I don't go around chanting things. I've never worn a toga.

I've never had a "vision" that could ever be defined as more than a vivid dream. I've never seen a spirit or a ghost and never spoken to disembodied voices. I've never lived in a commune, never word tie-dye, although I have to admit I grew my hair to my shoulders in the 70's and had long side burns.

I also made and sold "hippie beads" when I was eighteen and nineteen, but that was along side the doll house furniture I also made and sold, which was happening right along side my chemlab … yes "chemistry." I know what chemistry is.

I've never met the Dali Llama, although I'd probably greet the opportunity with honor, as I would if I could meet Paracelcus or Newton or Hermes.

It's hard to pigeon-hole me since I've lived a fairly independent eclectic life. I am not "conventional." I've been self-employed since 1979, for twenty years as a graphic designer, photographer and printer, peaking with eight employees. In 1999, just before retiring from that enterprise, I started a canvas and upholstery shop. By 2009, I was forced by the economic downturn to close my shop and retail store, let five employees go to take a job as a mentor to young adults out of the Philly slums to meet my obligations. I've just resigned that position and have several enterprises brewing, including helping a friend catch up with his backlog of handmade African drums.

I've been involved with Native American philosophy and spirituality for more than twenty-five years, and anyone who knows the slightest inkling what that is, if it's one thing at all, it's "practical," meaning the bulk of is is not "dogma" but merely makes sense based on the very real Universe we live in.

I know, beyond reproach, what a "chemist" is. I also know, beyond reproach, what a "philosopher" is. In that light, it is indisputable that an "Alchemist" is both, without the exclusion of the other.

There are some that would force that exclusion down others' throats.

This I will not tolerate.

I do not tolerate mindless bullying.

I will "mindfully discuss" all day long, but I will not sit idly by and let foot-stomping and tantrums, however subtle, pollute a concept to the point where participants question the very nature of that which they are participating.

One of the core goals of Alchemy, in time immemorial, is to achieve what is called, "The Philosopher's Stone." This name is not mere verbal convenience. It has meaning.

Obviously, there is, has been and will be a great debate on exactly what this "item" is. One thing that is indisputable, by virtue of its literal name, is the fact that whatever it is, it is "philosophical" in nature. It may INCLUDE aspects of "chemistry," but it is not defined AS chemistry.

Chemistry is a fixed and limited science … a peer-reviewed, regulated discipline. Chemistry EXCLUDES all other aspects of both the sciences and everyday life of all sorts. Chemistry is concerned exclusively with chemistry, not physics, not neuroscience, not medicine and technically not even pharmaceuticals. Any medical (or financial) benefit of pharmaceuticals is merely an offshoot of the concerned chemical reactions.

Alchemy has no such exclusions.

Alchemy is INclusive of EVERY aspect of life and the Universe.

Alchemy is referred to as "The Sacred Art" for a REASON, and that reason is NOT to "exalt" participants, but because it is spiritually sacred -- spiritually sacred -- and it is an ART, not a science.

Any Alchemist that claims to be an Alchemist that EXcludes factors other than chemistry is no Alchemist at all …

However …

… even that statement is slightly misleading when defining Alchemy.

That person of exclusion may, in fact, BE an Alchemist, but can only be defined as a fledgling nebbish that has not progressed past … or even acquired … the basic rudiments of Alchemy. Again, Alchemy is INclusive, and INcludes chemistry, but INclusion is something five-senses empirical chemists do not have the capacity to do.

Alchemy traces its roots to The Emerald Tablet, wherein Newton's translation states:

"That which is below is like that which is above & that which is above is like that which is below to do the miracles of one only thing."

Clearly, "below" refers to manifest reality, and "above" refers to non-physical spiritual reality.

There simply is no argument.

Should one discredit Newton, one discredits Alchemy itself, and the root source, The Emerald Tablet.

References of this type permeate Alchemical texts. The reference to non-vulgar Sulphur, Mercury and Salt alone clearly define Alchemy as wholly distinct from the fixed science of chemistry. For anyone to assert Alchemy is a fixed, five-senses based, empirical science, it can only be concluded that the assertion is merely will, not fact, and the result of delusional, self-limiting thinking.

None of what I've typed and asserted here is in any way, shape or form a "defense" or a defensive statement. There is nothing to defend. The facts are clear. The record speaks for itself and the clearly defined language is indisputable.

In essence, Life is more than science, and it is certainly more than chemistry, as Alchemy is, has been and always will be. The discussion of chemical processes, exclusive of all other processes, is not Alchemy and never can be. Or, more accurately, such a discussion could only ever be one aspect of Alchemy.

The very structure of this forum supports the assertion, which need not be asserted at all since it is simple fact.

Persistent bullying can never change that.

JDP
03-19-2014, 03:08 PM
You say that as if it's a "bad" thing.

**smile**

"Don't bother me with facts, my mind is made up."

All too familiar.

What "facts"? You have presented only personal opinions and speculations.

JDP
03-19-2014, 03:23 PM
For those of you who may be wondering, I'm no Hippie. I'm not a tree-hugger and I don't go around chanting things. I've never worn a toga.

I've never had a "vision" that could ever be defined as more than a vivid dream. I've never seen a spirit or a ghost and never spoken to disembodied voices. I've never lived in a commune, never word tie-dye, although I have to admit I grew my hair to my shoulders in the 70's and had long side burns.

I also made and sold "hippie beads" when I was eighteen and nineteen, but that was along side the doll house furniture I also made and sold, which was happening right along side my chemlab … yes "chemistry." I know what chemistry is.

I've never met the Dali Llama, although I'd probably greet the opportunity with honor, as I would if I could meet Paracelcus or Newton or Hermes.

It's hard to pigeon-hole me since I've lived a fairly independent eclectic life. I am not "conventional." I've been self-employed since 1979, for twenty years as a graphic designer, photographer and printer, peaking with eight employees. In 1999, just before retiring from that enterprise, I started a canvas and upholstery shop. By 2009, I was forced by the economic downturn to close my shop and retail store, let five employees go to take a job as a mentor to young adults out of the Philly slums to meet my obligations. I've just resigned that position and have several enterprises brewing, including helping a friend catch up with his backlog of handmade African drums.

I've been involved with Native American philosophy and spirituality for more than twenty-five years, and anyone who knows the slightest inkling what that is, if it's one thing at all, it's "practical," meaning the bulk of is is not "dogma" but merely makes sense based on the very real Universe we live in.

I know, beyond reproach, what a "chemist" is. I also know, beyond reproach, what a "philosopher" is. In that light, it is indisputable that an "Alchemist" is both, without the exclusion of the other.

There are some that would force that exclusion down others' throats.

This I will not tolerate.

I do not tolerate mindless bullying.

I will "mindfully discuss" all day long, but I will not sit idly by and let foot-stomping and tantrums, however subtle, pollute a concept to the point where participants question the very nature of that which they are participating.

One of the core goals of Alchemy, in time immemorial, is to achieve what is called, "The Philosopher's Stone." This name is not mere verbal convenience. It has meaning.

Obviously, there is, has been and will be a great debate on exactly what this "item" is. One thing that is indisputable, by virtue of its literal name, is the fact that whatever it is, it is "philosophical" in nature. It may INCLUDE aspects of "chemistry," but it is not defined AS chemistry.

Chemistry is a fixed and limited science … a peer-reviewed, regulated discipline. Chemistry EXCLUDES all other aspects of both the sciences and everyday life of all sorts. Chemistry is concerned exclusively with chemistry, not physics, not neuroscience, not medicine and technically not even pharmaceuticals. Any medical (or financial) benefit of pharmaceuticals is merely an offshoot of the concerned chemical reactions.

Alchemy has no such exclusions.

Alchemy is INclusive of EVERY aspect of life and the Universe.

Alchemy is referred to as "The Sacred Art" for a REASON, and that reason is NOT to "exalt" participants, but because it is spiritually sacred -- spiritually sacred -- and it is an ART, not a science.

Any Alchemist that claims to be an Alchemist that EXcludes factors other than chemistry is no Alchemist at all …

However …

… even that statement is slightly misleading when defining Alchemy.

That person of exclusion may, in fact, BE an Alchemist, but can only be defined as a fledgling nebbish that has not progressed past … or even acquired … the basic rudiments of Alchemy. Again, Alchemy is INclusive, and INcludes chemistry, but INclusion is something five-senses empirical chemists do not have the capacity to do.

Alchemy traces its roots to The Emerald Tablet, wherein Newton's translation states:

"That which is below is like that which is above & that which is above is like that which is below to do the miracles of one only thing."

Clearly, "below" refers to manifest reality, and "above" refers to non-physical spiritual reality.

There simply is no argument.

Should one discredit Newton, one discredits Alchemy itself, and the root source, The Emerald Tablet.

References of this type permeate Alchemical texts. The reference to non-vulgar Sulphur, Mercury and Salt alone clearly define Alchemy as wholly distinct from the fixed science of chemistry. For anyone to assert Alchemy is a fixed, five-senses based, empirical science, it can only be concluded that the assertion is merely will, not fact, and the result of delusional, self-limiting thinking.

None of what I've typed and asserted here is in any way, shape or form a "defense" or a defensive statement. There is nothing to defend. The facts are clear. The record speaks for itself and the clearly defined language is indisputable.

In essence, Life is more than science, and it is certainly more than chemistry, as Alchemy is, has been and always will be. The discussion of chemical processes, exclusive of all other processes, is not Alchemy and never can be. Or, more accurately, such a discussion could only ever be one aspect of Alchemy.

The very structure of this forum supports the assertion, which need not be asserted at all since it is simple fact.

Persistent bullying can never change that.

Bottom line from which there is no escape: if the Philosophers' Stone exists, as alchemy asserts, then it is a very real and tangible substance, not some sort of metaphysical, mental, psychic or spiritual quest or transformation being strangely disguised under the language of laboratory operations with actual substances. Then it follows that it can be obtained by anyone who somehow manages to discover how to make it. Trying to conjure up "supernatural" causes as necessary for the production of this substance is a totally uncorroborated claim. Who can possibly prove this? You can prove the Stone exists (if you know how to make it and give a sample to someone else for testing, as it was reportedly done in many cases in the past) but how can anyone possibly prove something as a "Divine Permission" being necessary for success, for example? The only way you could prove this is by actually explaining in clear words the whole procedure, and then letting the whole world see with their own eyes that no matter how much those who have no "Divine permit" keep on trying they will keep on failing, no matter what, while those who do have it keep on succeeding. Needless to say, not a single one of the alchemists who boasted he could write the whole process in plain words and you would still not succeed without this supernatural providence intervening put his money where his mouth was and published such a totally clear description for making the Stone. In fact, those who made such boasts are among the obscurest writers. That should tell you a lot about how much they really believed in such a bold claim.

Kiorionis
03-19-2014, 04:35 PM
Bottom line from which there is no escape: if the Philosophers' Stone exists, as alchemy asserts, then it is a very real and tangible substance, not some sort of metaphysical, mental, psychic or spiritual quest or transformation being strangely disguised under the language of laboratory operations with actual substances.

The Philosopher's Stone could also be a very real and intangible substance, which needs some sort of strange disguise (metaphor, allegory) under language in order to define it properly, and laboratory operations to further its fixation and manifestation. At least this is my understanding of what alchemy asserts, and why Philosophers have so many fantastic and stylistic explanations of it in the Beginning. Also may be why many of the philosophers i've read refer to dreams and visions during their initial pursuits.

To say something exists doesn't necessary mean it must have physical substance. Consciousness exists, thoughts exist, memories and reflecting on past experiences exist, and most recently Science (--or those people at the CERN particle accelerator and CERN's supporters) claims the Higgs Field is a real thing, and defines it as an invisible energy field that exists everywhere in the universe.

But that's just an opinion currently held by some Scientists. Far from now in time I bet people will be laughing at our age's limited understanding of things :p

DonSweet
03-19-2014, 07:03 PM
"The only way you could prove this ..."

"Who can possibly prove this?"

" ... how can anyone possibly prove something as a "Divine Permission" being necessary for success, for example?"

" ... then it is a very real and tangible substance."

It is clear that your perceptions are limited. These statements and questions are empirical evidence of that limitation.

These observable, stated limitations are the sensory factors of see, touch, hear, taste and smell. They are limitations of the physical body.

"Reason" alone proves the existence of something beyond the physical body. Reason takes facts ... physical manifestations that can be physically observed ... and perceives them as something other than physical manifestation.

The example of mathematics as opposed to applied mathematics demonstrates the evolution of "pure fact" as a connection to something beyond pure fact.

Mathematics is a fundament of engineering, which is a rudiment of building engineering, which creates housing for people, institutions and businesses, which provides for both the physical AND esoteric needs of human beings, which makes those human beings [supposedly, theoretically] safe and happy.

"Safe and happy" CAN be defined empirically, but due to the emotional, non-physical basis of "feeling," an integral part of living, is wholly too subjective to limit to five-senses empirical analysis.

This is "wholistic cyclical thinking," as opposed to fixed, limited, linear thinking. Yes, the "w" is left in place for a reason.

Pure, empirical, rule-based mathematics is linear ... it can be considered "evolutionary," but it is fixed as it exists in the present. Even mathematical theory is fixed until "proven" otherwise.

This is fixed, linear thinking ... which ... in the end ... despite its own assertions of allowing for "theory" is compartmentalized and limited.

Theory alone, an integral part of virtually every science, even cracks the nut of this intentional, fixed compartmentalization creating a self-defeating paradox.

JDP ... the very definition of your words and syntax defines your limitations.

Again, as evidenced by a flood, a plethora, of evidence in literature and the historic record, both archaic and current, up to and including the nature and structure of this very forum, Alchemy has no such limitations.

The very nature of Alchemy itself is a reflection of what transpires in the Universe itself ... the cyclical process of creation, destruction and rebirth and all of the factors that contribute to this process whether tangible or intangible to the five senses.

The very definition of the five senses and the perceptions achieved through them are shockingly limited, as is ...

1) the in-your-face evidence of the limits of the perceivable spectrum of wavelength alone

... as ...

2) this is only a "perceivable" collection of wavelengths ...

... whereas ...

3) "science" is constantly unearthing waves and states previously unheard of ...

... and ... in fact ... is as we speak ...

4) is now concurring with perceptions of states of being (wavelengths) that have been discussed ad nauseum in contexts outside empirical science.

Proof?

Provide proof?

Define "proof."

Define "real."

Define "tangible."

"Love" is very, very real in all its forms, but is nether tangible to the five senses, nor can I "prove" how or where it "exists."

If your definition of "proof" is evidenced exclusively by five-senses criteria, not only do I withdraw from such a discussion, I come back at you with the [yes, terse, but very real] statement, "There's a hell of a lot more to proving a circumstance in this thing we call Life than the goddamn five senses."

"Ignorance" is EXclusion.

You cannot call a seeker with the rudiment of INclusion "ignorant," when you, yourself self-limit TO ignorance by the process of EXclusion.

The collection of statements you make above clearly, distinctly, unarguably illustrates your utter contempt for anyone who thinks outside your box of rules ... that anything or anyone that "conjects" beyond those rules is undoubtedly contemptible. Have you never taken "joy" into account with your five senses perspective? Like the plant that grows stronger, greener and more hardy when exposed to "joyful" music -- empirically proven and previously debunked -- would not other processes outside your empirical world have the potential to influence an outcome or result?

As for "lying" and related historical references that may be construed as obfuscation, I will remind you that for several hundred years (perhaps millenia), particularly with the ruthless implementation of Christian dogma, were you to suggest anything outside these certain dogmas, YOU WERE KILLED ... often slowly, painfully and publicly. Untold treasures of accumulated human experience, knowledge and wisdom has been burned to ashes for merely SPECULATING outside dogma ... which is a fixed, limited perception ... and that very same fixed, limited perception you assert. Sure, there have been liars and charlatans, gazillions of them, but you do not condemn an entire process of perception ... non-dogmatic unconventional perception ... over a few assholes simply because you feel your [fixed] conventions are being threatened.

If one were to be compelled to define "good" and "evil," it would be a simple, childlike process to say that INclusion is good and EXclusion is evil ...

... based on the historical record alone.

Interesting that this obvious observation contradicts many religious doctrines that are wholly EXclusive ... but that's a conversation for another context.

horticult
03-19-2014, 10:41 PM
pls ignore bs & back to that black smoky matter

DonSweet
03-19-2014, 11:00 PM
Ha! horticult.

Funny.

JDP started this thread and even named it "Aspects of Alchemy." That's an open invitation.

Interesting that you, too, would demonize and ridicule as "bs" the Aspects of Alchemy as others would see them.

"And lo the legions of darkness be numerous."

Just kidding.

Just made that up.

Lighten up fella ... or 'mam ... I can't tell which.

DonSweet
03-19-2014, 11:38 PM
By the way ...

I didn't want to neglect an acknowledgement and more-than-a-nod of Kiorionis's post.

Solid citation. Insightful observations.

Well done.

III
03-20-2014, 04:40 AM
So let's see, consciousness, intelligence and all sorts of things can't be seen or proven. I don't even know any way to prove that this world and all it's people exist as the solid things they appear to be. It could all be illusion but I can't prove that either. String theorists believe in a minimum of 10 dimensions and who knows how many others. In a multi-world quantum theory schema, all sorts of possible worlds exist but that can't be proven or disproven either.


To the best of my knowledge no physical lab at all is needed, beyond our own bodies, for the practice of alchemy. As all potential Alchemists come with what is needed, adding chemicals and glassware doesn't negate that. I can't prove that Tantric Alchemy works either but I can demonstrate that to a few very select persons by teaching them the methods. But then, they know, but it isn't obvious to anybody who can't or won't learn, as what is changed is the being or soul itself. Of course the practices and theories themselves would be enough to cause torture and death at least in the Christian areas of this world for lots of centuries so it makes sense to completely disguise what is being done. Adopting a perhaps laughable cover story to make the truth invisible makes perfect sense to avoid torture and murder. It's only natural that some would fall for the cover story hook line and sinker and not believe, despite all the hints, that there is anything beyond glassware and chemicals. Have fun.

Andro
03-20-2014, 05:42 AM
JDP started this thread and even named it "Aspects of Alchemy." That's an open invitation.

Actually, this is a spin-off thread that originally started on DonSweet's My Original Lab (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?3941-My-Original-Lab&p=33803#post33803) thread, where it quickly diverged into various (off-topic) tangents.

So I created this spin-off thread and named it 'Aspects of Alchemy', since it had already organically evolved into an interesting open-ended discussion. Please, everyone feel free to address any aspects/perspectives on Alchemy as you see fit. It's perfectly fine to continue and keep this thread open-ended and especially ignore any poorly formulated attempts (i.e. not backed up by even the slightest trace of reasoning and/or counter-arguments)* to bully/bullshitize any particular aspects among those mentioned. Present your perspectives, elaborate and back them up the best you can, as this thread turned out to be quite an interesting multiparty 'debate'.


pls ignore bs & back to that black smoky matter

Talking from experience, it is generally more beneficial for the overall discussion to ignore such 'demands'/'requests' (when they are presented without any further & complementary reasoning/elaboration)*, and, in this case, continue this interesting and multifaceted thread in any direction it may lead, as long as it stays on the current (broad) topic and addresses the various perspectives/aspects of Alchemy.

If anyone feels inclined to create a new dedicated discussion thread and name it 'that black smoky matter' (for example), it's perfectly fine as well.

On a more general note, it is in the best interest of Alchemy Forums (and its actually value-contributing members) to maintain reasonably high quality standards of posts and membership (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?3345-How-to-join-Alchemy-Forums&p=26858#post26858), regardless of whether there is agreement or 'heated' debate. We all slip (or snap) sometimes, but we can still strive to do our best...

* This only refers to the kind of demanding, context-less and poorly formulated one-liners, that do not actually contribute to the overall value of the discussion.

Thanks.

DonSweet
03-20-2014, 06:31 AM
Thank you.

JDP
03-20-2014, 03:16 PM
The Philosopher's Stone could also be a very real and intangible substance, which needs some sort of strange disguise (metaphor, allegory) under language in order to define it properly, and laboratory operations to further its fixation and manifestation. At least this is my understanding of what alchemy asserts, and why Philosophers have so many fantastic and stylistic explanations of it in the Beginning. Also may be why many of the philosophers i've read refer to dreams and visions during their initial pursuits.

If we grant this point, we also have to admit that once it "manifests" itself it becomes a physical tangible substance, capable of being measured/examined/manipulated, thus its existence can be proven.


To say something exists doesn't necessary mean it must have physical substance. Consciousness exists, thoughts exist, memories and reflecting on past experiences exist, and most recently Science (--or those people at the CERN particle accelerator and CERN's supporters) claims the Higgs Field is a real thing, and defines it as an invisible energy field that exists everywhere in the universe.

But that's just an opinion currently held by some Scientists. Far from now in time I bet people will be laughing at our age's limited understanding of things :p

Yes, but they exist as long as the people in whose brains those things happen are alive, so they can be explained as biological functions. Once the person dies... it's anyone's guess what happens to them. If you could prove that such a thing as consciousness survives the biological death of the organism, you would have solved the biggest unknown that has been occupying the mind of mankind since the beginning of civilization.

JDP
03-20-2014, 03:20 PM
"The only way you could prove this ..."

"Who can possibly prove this?"

" ... how can anyone possibly prove something as a "Divine Permission" being necessary for success, for example?"

" ... then it is a very real and tangible substance."

It is clear that your perceptions are limited. These statements and questions are empirical evidence of that limitation.

These observable, stated limitations are the sensory factors of see, touch, hear, taste and smell. They are limitations of the physical body.

"Reason" alone proves the existence of something beyond the physical body. Reason takes facts ... physical manifestations that can be physically observed ... and perceives them as something other than physical manifestation.

The example of mathematics as opposed to applied mathematics demonstrates the evolution of "pure fact" as a connection to something beyond pure fact.

Mathematics is a fundament of engineering, which is a rudiment of building engineering, which creates housing for people, institutions and businesses, which provides for both the physical AND esoteric needs of human beings, which makes those human beings [supposedly, theoretically] safe and happy.

"Safe and happy" CAN be defined empirically, but due to the emotional, non-physical basis of "feeling," an integral part of living, is wholly too subjective to limit to five-senses empirical analysis.

This is "wholistic cyclical thinking," as opposed to fixed, limited, linear thinking. Yes, the "w" is left in place for a reason.

Pure, empirical, rule-based mathematics is linear ... it can be considered "evolutionary," but it is fixed as it exists in the present. Even mathematical theory is fixed until "proven" otherwise.

This is fixed, linear thinking ... which ... in the end ... despite its own assertions of allowing for "theory" is compartmentalized and limited.

Theory alone, an integral part of virtually every science, even cracks the nut of this intentional, fixed compartmentalization creating a self-defeating paradox.

JDP ... the very definition of your words and syntax defines your limitations.

Again, as evidenced by a flood, a plethora, of evidence in literature and the historic record, both archaic and current, up to and including the nature and structure of this very forum, Alchemy has no such limitations.

The very nature of Alchemy itself is a reflection of what transpires in the Universe itself ... the cyclical process of creation, destruction and rebirth and all of the factors that contribute to this process whether tangible or intangible to the five senses.

The very definition of the five senses and the perceptions achieved through them are shockingly limited, as is ...

1) the in-your-face evidence of the limits of the perceivable spectrum of wavelength alone

... as ...

2) this is only a "perceivable" collection of wavelengths ...

... whereas ...

3) "science" is constantly unearthing waves and states previously unheard of ...

... and ... in fact ... is as we speak ...

4) is now concurring with perceptions of states of being (wavelengths) that have been discussed ad nauseum in contexts outside empirical science.

Proof?

Provide proof?

Define "proof."

Define "real."

Define "tangible."

"Love" is very, very real in all its forms, but is nether tangible to the five senses, nor can I "prove" how or where it "exists."

If your definition of "proof" is evidenced exclusively by five-senses criteria, not only do I withdraw from such a discussion, I come back at you with the [yes, terse, but very real] statement, "There's a hell of a lot more to proving a circumstance in this thing we call Life than the goddamn five senses."

"Ignorance" is EXclusion.

You cannot call a seeker with the rudiment of INclusion "ignorant," when you, yourself self-limit TO ignorance by the process of EXclusion.

The collection of statements you make above clearly, distinctly, unarguably illustrates your utter contempt for anyone who thinks outside your box of rules ... that anything or anyone that "conjects" beyond those rules is undoubtedly contemptible. Have you never taken "joy" into account with your five senses perspective? Like the plant that grows stronger, greener and more hardy when exposed to "joyful" music -- empirically proven and previously debunked -- would not other processes outside your empirical world have the potential to influence an outcome or result?

As for "lying" and related historical references that may be construed as obfuscation, I will remind you that for several hundred years (perhaps millenia), particularly with the ruthless implementation of Christian dogma, were you to suggest anything outside these certain dogmas, YOU WERE KILLED ... often slowly, painfully and publicly. Untold treasures of accumulated human experience, knowledge and wisdom has been burned to ashes for merely SPECULATING outside dogma ... which is a fixed, limited perception ... and that very same fixed, limited perception you assert. Sure, there have been liars and charlatans, gazillions of them, but you do not condemn an entire process of perception ... non-dogmatic unconventional perception ... over a few assholes simply because you feel your [fixed] conventions are being threatened.

If one were to be compelled to define "good" and "evil," it would be a simple, childlike process to say that INclusion is good and EXclusion is evil ...

... based on the historical record alone.

Interesting that this obvious observation contradicts many religious doctrines that are wholly EXclusive ... but that's a conversation for another context.

Since we are dealing with a subject that makes a series of claims (a substance that can transmute metals by many times its own weight, cures for all sorts of diseases, extension of life) which are very much physical and tangible, it is perfectly logical that questions about their veracity and their need to be proved will always come up. I don't know why you get so surprised by this.

MarkostheGnostic
03-20-2014, 08:37 PM
In fact, if alchemy really was what people who hold such ideas say it is, it would be one of the most contemptible things in history. Claiming to achieve some sort of "spiritual" revelation or realization and then purposefully hiding it from most of the world and misleading people into thinking it is about transmuting metals so that they waste their time and money on something entirely different would pretty much make the alchemists one of the most devious, lying, evil and sadistic people in history. It implies that they would relish seeing other people stay in complete and total ignorance of the supposed "spiritual" truth they had discovered (which goes against the teachings of actual religions and spiritual movements, which openly explain their beliefs to everyone) and on top of that causing them untold amounts of anguish, pain, anxiety, suffering, toil, expenditure, etc. by making them waste time and money with things (laboratory procedures, manipulation of substances) that have no connection whatsoever with what they really supposedly achieved.

I recommend that you read Chapter 5, 'Phoenix Fire,' in Joseph Campbell's book Creative Mythology: The Masks of God. Page 262, you'll see 'II. The Left-Hand Way.' This section delves into alchemy, but more to the point, it addresses your objection exactly! There is too much to reproduce for you here, but Campbell begins with the illustration of the King and Queen, standing on Solar and Lunar symbols, holding each other's LEFT hand in that woodcut of the Rosarium philosophorum. The caption beneath reads:

"Mark well: in the art of our magisterium nothing is concealed by the philosophers except the secret of the art, which may not be revealed to all and sundry. For were that to happen, that man would be accursed; he would incur the wrath of God and perish of the apoplexy. Wherefore all error in the art arises, namely, because men do not begin with the proper substance." p. 263 Campbell

Then Campbell says of a later page in that manuscript:

"So I have not declared all that appears and is necessary in this work, because there are things of which a man may not speak. . .Such matters must be transmitted in mystical terms, like poetry employing fables and parables.
Now Christ himself, it can be recalled, issued a like warning to those who would speak of spiritual things: 'Do not give dogs what is holy; and do not throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot and turn and attack you.' And again: 'To you,' he said to his disciples, 'it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but for others they are in the parables, so that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.'"

That alchemy ends up in Joseph Campbell's opus on mythology is telling in itself. Alchemy is a religious form, first and foremost. It is NOT chemistry. If one works before bubbling retorts instead of a paten and chalice, that is because (Campbell quoting Jung here):

" For the alchemist the one primarily in need of redemption is not man, but the deity who is lost and sleeping in matter. Only as a secondary consideration does he hope that some benefit may accrue to himself from the transformed substance as the panacea, the medicina catholica...His attention is not directed to his own salvation through God's grace, but to the liberation of God from the darkness of matter. By applying himself to this miraculous work he benefits from its salutary effect, but only incidentally...Therefore what comes out of the transformation is not Christ, but an ineffable material being named the 'stone,' which displays the most paradoxical qualities apart from possessing corpus anima, spiritus, and supernatural powers...The substance that harbors the divine secret is everywhere, including the human body. It can be had for the asking and can be found anywhere, even in the most loathsome filth." P. 271-272 Ibid

Taking alchemy as chemistry is the same 'sin' that mainstream religionists commit when they take myth, midrash, metaphor, and metaphysics, for literal history. I was a Jew, baptized Catholic, who graduated from a Methodist seminary, and as such, I have never been capable of getting my mind to 'believe' that the Eucharistic Host and Wine, were actually and truly the transubstantial Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. I understand the intention of the ancient practitioners, but their pre-modern thinking already blurred and conflated the physical with the metaphysical nature of things. Heaven and the heavens were totally conflated as were myth and history. This same deception occurs within the 'religion' of alchemy, but similarly, I am not buying the equally miraculous transformation of Pb to Ag and Au, by virtue of the Stone in its variously described forms.

Christianity is taught AS IF the myths depicted in the Tenach and New Testament were history. If people still believe that Lot's wife and others were turned into pillars of salt, that Noah managed to fit two of every species of creature onto an ark, and that the entire planet was deluged, or a virgin birth, walking on water, conversion of water to wine, or physical resurrection from death, then that tells me more about what level of cognitive and spiritual development a person is at than it does about what is physically possible.

Red and white powders (or waxy lumps) that transmute base metals to gold and silver respectively require belief and faith as physical verities, no less than faith and belief in physical transubstantiation or resuscitation-resurrection from death - until one delves into these myths more deeply. Then, for example, one sees Lazarus as L'azar, the Egyptian name for the Greek Osiris, and his being wrapped in bandages, emerging into the light of day, recalls the image and likeness of the Egyptian myth of Osiris, mummy-wrapped. And Lazarus, four days dead, emerging from a tomb wrapped in funery bandages in the NT speaks to what we call the Egyptian Book of the Dead, which is The Book of Coming Forth by Day in Egyptian. It's an older myth described as history, and as such, a non-physical verity.

The NT speaks to the issue of Eternal Life, (which, most Christians still misidentify with the non-biblical notion of personal immortality). As Campbell's quotes of Jung illustrates, the alchemist seems to have been working towards what is called the restoration in Kabbala, tikkun, which employs a whole other mythos - the breaking of the vessels at the beginning of creation, which lead to evil (Qlippoth) and the imperfection of creation. The alchemist seems to be acting in the service of this restoration, and, it couldn't hurt if the operator was transformed positively in the process. But once the mythic substratum of these laboratory processes is discerned, one's hopes for magickal transmutation of base matter into noble and hence valuable matter on the physical plane, (Malkuth) necessarily needs to be laid to rest.

horticult
03-20-2014, 09:01 PM
campbell is an alchemical authority? maybe 4 some chemical soup. ;-)
virgin birth is the corner stone of alchemy.
imo that wise old man c g jung would never mentioned alchemy, if he anticipated how his great work will be distorted&misunderstood.

III
03-20-2014, 09:05 PM
Since we are dealing with a subject that makes a series of claims (a substance that can transmute metals by many times its own weight, cures for all sorts of diseases, extension of life) which are very much physical and tangible, it is perfectly logical that questions about their veracity and their need to be proved will always come up. I don't know why you get so surprised by this.


We are dealing with a claim that there is a physical substance in a physical world that can be perceived as doing things not influenced by consciousness. Really? Prove it! Quantum theory would have us think otherwise. Many interpretations of non dualism would have us existing in a virtual holodeck for all intents and purposes, a subset of consciousness thinking it is in this physical world with physical things in which "miracles" happen as some sort of intervention rather than the normal operating of the system that most people conveniently forget almost as soon as something unusual to them happens. Then they make up all sorts of complicated stories to explain the to them "unusual" occurrences.


Then there is the divine. One can commune with the divine of which we are a part. One can sense the divine. It is very tangible to all in the communion. Of course "proving" that to the blind is a whole other matter. Again one can sense LOVE and those that can't are to be pitied for their blindness. IT is seen without eyes. IT is heard without ears. It is of course so much more difficult to work with the divine if one is not aware of IT.


So feel free to prove or disprove the divine, if you can.

lwowl
03-20-2014, 10:43 PM
the rest of science is a theoretical imagery whose connection to reality must remain forever uncertain

Could it be that this substance of uncertainty is the material used to build the certainty; once observed it becomes fixed."

Could be. Even though what we know about it from observation is not all there is to it as the deeper we observe into the substance the more uncertainty we find and then fix it thus adding to our certain knowledge:)



So before we came along into the existence the laws of physics functioned without our observations and probably will do so long after we're gone.
If this statement can be joined with the one below...[which I find fascinating as it is something I have tried to explain to others, but can never find the correct words to do so...and now here they are.



Of course the ultimate Paradox is each of us. We are not any of the things we identify as "myself." Everything you might think you are can be objectified and possessed by calling it "mine." Once it is yours it cannot be you. So at the core we are no things but take things as our own.
Then, if we are "no thing" how could we have "come into existence" and this raises the question, "is it possible that the laws of physics do not function at all without 'our' observation as "no thing" may have existed before anything?

I believe you are right: no thing existed before anything, or no thing is at the core of any thing. And we can never know no thing because it is not any thing at all. This is the ultimate paradox of the Universe. I've experienced it in a lucid state driven by the power in an elixir I made.

The easiest way for me to explain it to myself, if that is an adequate explanation at all, is that there is an eternal marriage or battle between entropy and no thing. Entropy eventually consumes everything: all energy/matter manifestations: Every time there is a change in state of energy/matter Entropy feeds on it until the Universe stops moving at 0 degrees Kelvin. When all movement stops the space/time continuum collapses into no thing. But, Entropy feeds on that collapsing momentum into no-thingness. She opens very wide with unimaginable hunger for something, anything. But there is only no thing to satisfy her as she turns inside out on that last intense bit of momentum engulfing no thing. The no thing thus engulfed turns inside out in a fantastic gusher of information. And Pop, there goes the Palingenesis of the Universe, or the conception of another universe:)


Is the undefined Spiritus Mundi?

Perhaps that's why it is so hard to define:confused:"

I think you are on to something there:)



My take on it is that the Philosopher's Stone is dangerous in the wrong hands. What I mean is, not for the usual reasons. It amplifies the one who ingests it, what would it be for the populace if their thoughts were amplified? Horror picture show? Fears, insecurities, the instability of emotions manifesting. I mean, instantaneously. It's on the minds of the adepts not to give "kids" a sword they can't properly use.

You want to save the populace from taking it, until one day they evolve to a point where they can live with their emotions and thoughts normally.

I think you are right about that. Though I have yet to complete making the Philosopher's Stone in the lab I have made that astral spirit and it does have a powerful effect on one's psyche. It can be compared somewhat with psychedelic experiences. Except the affects of a psychedelic are always distorted by comparison, and one is usually drawn along like a leaf in the wind, and such a state if resisted can cause a schizoid disassociation which is highly uncomfortable:)

The energy in a philosophical alchemical product, I believe until proven otherwise, has the potential to unlock your information system from the automatic functions of biochemistry into a flux capable of anything possible. The reality of this is very dangerous.

One could become lost if you cannot regulate the transcendent information system flux. From my small experience one has to first become aware of one's "subtle body" because that is what you are operating in when your common physical body has been disassociated into an energy flux (Haven't got that far yet:)). Though I think it will vary between individuals, but the overall patterns will be similar.

The Chinese and Hindu alchemists were writing about this 2000 years ago: how to activate the subtle body or light body. For the Taoist alchemists the goal was transcendence and immortality.


The Philosopher's Stone could also be a very real and intangible substance, which needs some sort of strange disguise (metaphor, allegory) under language in order to define it properly, and laboratory operations to further its fixation and manifestation. At least this is my understanding of what alchemy asserts, and why Philosophers have so many fantastic and stylistic explanations of it in the Beginning. Also may be why many of the philosophers i've read refer to dreams and visions during their initial pursuits.

To say something exists doesn't necessary mean it must have physical substance. Consciousness exists, thoughts exist, memories and reflecting on past experiences exist, and most recently Science (--or those people at the CERN particle accelerator and CERN's supporters) claims the Higgs Field is a real thing, and defines it as an invisible energy field that exists everywhere in the universe.

But that's just an opinion currently held by some Scientists. Far from now in time I bet people will be laughing at our age's limited understanding of things.

I think you are absolutely right. Cyliani is a great example of that with his dream of the celestial nymph. For me it is all about becoming aware of your own information system. I've spent decades deciphering my dreams and contemplating the parameters of that information system. And still it is a mystery governed by forces that make up my self, where the ego confronts or communes with the inscrutable unconscious self. And the unconscious self could be congruent with what Ghislain called the Uncertainty.

I see no conflict between alchemy and science. Spiritus Mundi = Morphic Field = Higgs Field. Looks simple; hard to prove empirically:)

DonSweet
03-21-2014, 04:33 AM
My take on it is that the Philosopher's Stone is dangerous in the wrong hands. What I mean is, not for the usual reasons. It amplifies the one who ingests it, what would it be for the populace if their thoughts were amplified? Horror picture show? Fears, insecurities, the instability of emotions manifesting. I mean, instantaneously. It's on the minds of the adepts not to give "kids" a sword they can't properly use.

I'm not necessarily one to drag pop culture into esoteric conversations, but the 2011 film "Limitless" puts forward an interesting hypothesis on how the proposition might unfold in the hands of at least one "average schmuck." How that might happen en mass is anybody's guess. I suppose it's about the same guess as what might happen if the "Galactic Federation" landed en mass tomorrow afternoon.

http://www.otakhang.com/limitless-2011-bluray/

MarkostheGnostic
03-21-2014, 05:04 AM
campbell is an alchemical authority? maybe 4 some chemical soup. ;-)
virgin birth is the corner stone of alchemy.
imo that wise old man c g jung would never mentioned alchemy, if he anticipated how his great work will be distorted&misunderstood.

I think Campbell had an incredible mind, and alchemy certainly falls within the purview of his encyclopedic scope of knowledge. I do not see, neither have I ever read of the myth of virgin birth being the "corner stone of alchemy." The Stone, which Jung interpreted as Christ, is the corner stone. As for C.G. Jung, he didn't write as clearly as Freud, perhaps, but he is clear enough in the quotes that Joseph Campbell provided.

Krisztian
03-21-2014, 02:13 PM
. . . . Though I have yet to complete making the Philosopher's Stone in the lab I have made that astral spirit and it does have a powerful effect on one's psyche. It can be compared somewhat with psychedelic experiences. Except the affects of a psychedelic are always distorted by comparison, and one is usually drawn along like a leaf in the wind, and such a state if resisted can cause a schizoid disassociation which is highly uncomfortable:). . .

Thanks for sharing. From your description I know you're drawing near.

Scientifically minded often neglect to explore that the Philosopher's Stone is a measurable radiation of sort that's now fixed with the help of alchemical processes, into a stone or powder. In other words, that radiation not only triggers hormonal mechanisms, in short physiological, but also neurological and the framework of thoughts.

The main difficulty is (in thinking), why many fail, or produce a weak Philosopher's Stone, is fixing something that's an invisible radiation (to the visible light spectrum) into a physical vehicle or carrier.

JDP
03-21-2014, 05:36 PM
In fact, if alchemy really was what people who hold such ideas say it is, it would be one of the most contemptible things in history. Claiming to achieve some sort of "spiritual" revelation or realization and then purposefully hiding it from most of the world and misleading people into thinking it is about transmuting metals so that they waste their time and money on something entirely different would pretty much make the alchemists one of the most devious, lying, evil and sadistic people in history. It implies that they would relish seeing other people stay in complete and total ignorance of the supposed "spiritual" truth they had discovered (which goes against the teachings of actual religions and spiritual movements, which openly explain their beliefs to everyone) and on top of that causing them untold amounts of anguish, pain, anxiety, suffering, toil, expenditure, etc. by making them waste time and money with things (laboratory procedures, manipulation of substances) that have no connection whatsoever with what they really supposedly achieved.

I recommend that you read Chapter 5, 'Phoenix Fire,' in Joseph Campbell's book Creative Mythology: The Masks of God. Page 262, you'll see 'II. The Left-Hand Way.' This section delves into alchemy, but more to the point, it addresses your objection exactly! There is too much to reproduce for you here, but Campbell begins with the illustration of the King and Queen, standing on Solar and Lunar symbols, holding each other's LEFT hand in that woodcut of the Rosarium philosophorum. The caption beneath reads:

"Mark well: in the art of our magisterium nothing is concealed by the philosophers except the secret of the art, which may not be revealed to all and sundry. For were that to happen, that man would be accursed; he would incur the wrath of God and perish of the apoplexy. Wherefore all error in the art arises, namely, because men do not begin with the proper substance." p. 263 Campbell

Then Campbell says of a later page in that manuscript:

"So I have not declared all that appears and is necessary in this work, because there are things of which a man may not speak. . .Such matters must be transmitted in mystical terms, like poetry employing fables and parables.
Now Christ himself, it can be recalled, issued a like warning to those who would speak of spiritual things: 'Do not give dogs what is holy; and do not throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot and turn and attack you.' And again: 'To you,' he said to his disciples, 'it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but for others they are in the parables, so that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.'"

That alchemy ends up in Joseph Campbell's opus on mythology is telling in itself. Alchemy is a religious form, first and foremost. It is NOT chemistry. If one works before bubbling retorts instead of a paten and chalice, that is because (Campbell quoting Jung here):

" For the alchemist the one primarily in need of redemption is not man, but the deity who is lost and sleeping in matter. Only as a secondary consideration does he hope that some benefit may accrue to himself from the transformed substance as the panacea, the medicina catholica...His attention is not directed to his own salvation through God's grace, but to the liberation of God from the darkness of matter. By applying himself to this miraculous work he benefits from its salutary effect, but only incidentally...Therefore what comes out of the transformation is not Christ, but an ineffable material being named the 'stone,' which displays the most paradoxical qualities apart from possessing corpus anima, spiritus, and supernatural powers...The substance that harbors the divine secret is everywhere, including the human body. It can be had for the asking and can be found anywhere, even in the most loathsome filth." P. 271-272 Ibid

Taking alchemy as chemistry is the same 'sin' that mainstream religionists commit when they take myth, midrash, metaphor, and metaphysics, for literal history. I was a Jew, baptized Catholic, who graduated from a Methodist seminary, and as such, I have never been capable of getting my mind to 'believe' that the Eucharistic Host and Wine, were actually and truly the transubstantial Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. I understand the intention of the ancient practitioners, but their pre-modern thinking already blurred and conflated the physical with the metaphysical nature of things. Heaven and the heavens were totally conflated as were myth and history. This same deception occurs within the 'religion' of alchemy, but similarly, I am not buying the equally miraculous transformation of Pb to Ag and Au, by virtue of the Stone in its variously described forms.

Christianity is taught AS IF the myths depicted in the Tenach and New Testament were history. If people still believe that Lot's wife and others were turned into pillars of salt, that Noah managed to fit two of every species of creature onto an ark, and that the entire planet was deluged, or a virgin birth, walking on water, conversion of water to wine, or physical resurrection from death, then that tells me more about what level of cognitive and spiritual development a person is at than it does about what is physically possible.

Red and white powders (or waxy lumps) that transmute base metals to gold and silver respectively require belief and faith as physical verities, no less than faith and belief in physical transubstantiation or resuscitation-resurrection from death - until one delves into these myths more deeply. Then, for example, one sees Lazarus as L'azar, the Egyptian name for the Greek Osiris, and his being wrapped in bandages, emerging into the light of day, recalls the image and likeness of the Egyptian myth of Osiris, mummy-wrapped. And Lazarus, four days dead, emerging from a tomb wrapped in funery bandages in the NT speaks to what we call the Egyptian Book of the Dead, which is The Book of Coming Forth by Day in Egyptian. It's an older myth described as history, and as such, a non-physical verity.

The NT speaks to the issue of Eternal Life, (which, most Christians still misidentify with the non-biblical notion of personal immortality). As Campbell's quotes of Jung illustrates, the alchemist seems to have been working towards what is called the restoration in Kabbala, tikkun, which employs a whole other mythos - the breaking of the vessels at the beginning of creation, which lead to evil (Qlippoth) and the imperfection of creation. The alchemist seems to be acting in the service of this restoration, and, it couldn't hurt if the operator was transformed positively in the process. But once the mythic substratum of these laboratory processes is discerned, one's hopes for magickal transmutation of base matter into noble and hence valuable matter on the physical plane, (Malkuth) necessarily needs to be laid to rest.

That Campbell cites Jung is very telling. His book was written at a time when Jung's claims were still popular and widely (and uncritically) accepted.

Believing in a red or white powder that transmutes many times its own weight of base metals into gold or silver requires "faith" only as long as you have not seen it and handled it with your own hands and confirmed that it does what is claimed it does, as it (allegedly) has happened to many a witness in past times. What truly requires faith is all these strange interpretations of alchemy as being "something else" than it plainly presents itself as in its own literature. And unlike the Stone, I seriously doubt that such interpretations of alchemy could ever be proven if for no other reason than they all seek to "explain" alchemy by things which themselves are even more unknown and incapable of being proven. It's as Chaucer puts it when he has one of the interlocutors in an alchemical dialogue at the end of the Canon Yeoman's Tale make the following protestation: "This is ignotum per ignotius!" (i.e. explaining the unknown by the more unknown!) The only difference is that Chaucer, who apparently understood alchemy much better than modern spiritualists & Jungians, was talking about the composition of the "Magnesia", the mysterious and never clearly explained substance with which alchemy begins its operations.

JDP
03-21-2014, 06:08 PM
We are dealing with a claim that there is a physical substance in a physical world that can be perceived as doing things not influenced by consciousness. Really? Prove it! Quantum theory would have us think otherwise. Many interpretations of non dualism would have us existing in a virtual holodeck for all intents and purposes, a subset of consciousness thinking it is in this physical world with physical things in which "miracles" happen as some sort of intervention rather than the normal operating of the system that most people conveniently forget almost as soon as something unusual to them happens. Then they make up all sorts of complicated stories to explain the to them "unusual" occurrences.

What a strange "challenge". Were there people around at the beginning of the universe (if it indeed had a "beginning", that is)? No. Does that mean that the matter and forces that make up the universe were not around either, just because we were not there to be "conscious" of their being there? No. The fact that no one was around to observe how it all happened doesn't stop thinkers, philosophers and scientists to try to come up with "explanations" for it. So there is your answer. Things are independent from anyone's "consciousness". They don't care if you are not "aware" of or do not believe in them. They just are. And they will still be there doing what they always have done long after all of us (and our "consciousness") are gone too.


Then there is the divine. One can commune with the divine of which we are a part. One can sense the divine. It is very tangible to all in the communion. Of course "proving" that to the blind is a whole other matter. Again one can sense LOVE and those that can't are to be pitied for their blindness. IT is seen without eyes. IT is heard without ears. It is of course so much more difficult to work with the divine if one is not aware of IT.


So feel free to prove or disprove the divine, if you can.

In order to disprove something there must first be those who try to provide proof that "it" (whatever it is) exists. In this case, so far no one has offered any such proof about the "Divine". It's all based on faith and belief. The burden of proof is, therefore, first and foremost on the claimant. It is up to those who are convinced in the existence of the "Divine" to try to offer proof of its existence first. Then those who challenge such "proof" can come forth and offer counter-evidence to the contrary.

This brings us back to the topic: Some alchemists boasted that they could write the whole procedure for making the Stone clearly, without any occultation, and yet you would keep on failing if this "divine" intervention did not happen. Really? I wonder then why NONE of them who made such a boast put his money where his mouth was? Strange if you ask me, because if someone were to do this and shown it to be a fact, not only it would solve the problem whether the Philosophers' Stone exists or not, but in fact it would also prove the way more transcendental problem of whether such "divine" intervention or providence really exists too. Funny how individuals who pretended to be so pious always shied away from proving this and in the process freeing mankind once and for all from the biggest problem that has been puzzling the mind of man since the beginning of religion.

theFool
03-21-2014, 06:11 PM
Scientifically minded often neglect to explore that the Philosopher's Stone is a measurable radiation of sort that's now fixed with the help of alchemical processes, into a stone or powder. In other words, that radiation not only triggers hormonal mechanisms, in short physiological, but also neurological and the framework of thoughts.

The main difficulty is (in thinking), why many fail, or produce a weak Philosopher's Stone, is fixing something that's an invisible radiation (to the visible light spectrum) into a physical vehicle or carrier. Krisztian, do you mean radiation from radioactivity here (γ rays, β or α particles), or some other kind of radiation?

Jerry
03-21-2014, 08:35 PM
Scientifically minded often neglect to explore that the Philosopher's Stone is a measurable radiation of sort that's now fixed with the help of alchemical processes, into a stone or powder. In other words, that radiation not only triggers hormonal mechanisms, in short physiological, but also neurological and the framework of thoughts.

Speaking of the strange effects of radiation . . . I and others were watching an overhead crane loading steel ingots into a soaking pit furnace. A pit furnace is a structure that is about 20 feet wide, 40 feet long, and about 15-20 feet deep. It is lined with refractory brick and cement and has a single burner fueled by coal gas. When the furnace is at operating temperature it has a yellow-orange color. There is a cover on the furnace that is removed by a carriage on rails which has hangers that latch onto hooks on the cover. When the cover is lifted and retracted the whole of the furnace is exposed emitting a bright yellow-orange light that can be felt several hundred feet away. One of the carriages was engaged and lifted the cover of another furnace. A worker on the furnaces looked at the open furnace, got close to the edge, and jumped in. He landed on his feet and made some attempt to walk but melted and burst into flames like a marshmallow that fell into a camp fire. This was the conversation for some time and the old timers said this wasn’t the first time someone jumped into a furnace. I was told that people have jumped into ladles of molten iron. They said they just scrap the iron and tear down furnace and bury it all out in the lake.

About eighteen years later I was letting a camp fire (in a cast iron fire ring) burn down for the night. The fire ring was elevated on one end by some flat stones exposing the orange embers. I noticed something hopping around and it appeared to be a toad. The toad seemed to be attracted to the orange glowing coals and inched forward to the point I thought it might be too close. Being a nice guy, I picked up the toad and put it some distance away. About fifteen minutes later, the same toad or one that looked like it, came close to the fire and I picked it up and put some distance away in the other direction. About fifteen minute later, I noticed a toad hopping around and gazing at the orange embers. It kept getting closer to the glowing embers so I thought I would see how much heat this little animal could take. It sat quietly for a few minutes and took one giant leap into the fire where it melted like a marshmallow and burst into flames.

So ends this chapter on radiation.

III
03-21-2014, 08:57 PM
What a strange "challenge". Were there people around at the beginning of the universe (if it indeed had a "beginning", that is)? No. Does that mean that the matter and forces that make up the universe were not around either, just because we were not there to be "conscious" of their being there? No. The fact that no one was around to observe how it all happened doesn't stop thinkers, philosophers and scientists to try to come up with "explanations" for it. So there is your answer. Things are independent from anyone's "consciousness". They don't care if you are not "aware" of or do not believe in them. They just are. And they will still be there doing what they always have done long after all of us (and our "consciousness") are gone too.



In order to disprove something there must first be those who try to provide proof that "it" (whatever it is) exists. In this case, so far no one has offered any such proof about the "Divine". It's all based on faith and belief. The burden of proof is, therefore, first and foremost on the claimant. It is up to those who are convinced in the existence of the "Divine" to try to offer proof of its existence first. Then those who challenge such "proof" can come forth and offer counter-evidence to the contrary.

This brings us back to the topic: Some alchemists boasted that they could write the whole procedure for making the Stone clearly, without any occultation, and yet you would keep on failing if this "divine" intervention did not happen. Really? I wonder then why NONE of them who made such a boast put his money where his mouth was? Strange if you ask me, because if someone were to do this and shown it to be a fact, not only it would solve the problem whether the Philosophers' Stone exists or not, but in fact it would also prove the way more transcendental problem of whether such "divine" intervention or providence really exists too. Funny how individuals who pretended to be so pious always shied away from proving this and in the process freeing mankind once and for all from the biggest problem that has been puzzling the mind of man since the beginning of religion.


At least one of the points is that the divine is not provable in either direction. It can be demonstrated (experienced). As the same spiritual aspect of the divine is involved in Alchemy it is at the root of what you are insisting on. Written directions without "understanding" that brings in the spiritual aspect, that allows alchemical processes to take place rather than merely chemical processes, are worthless ands can't produce the desired effectiveness. Alchemy happens when the local "world" rules change to allow the alchemical process to occur. The Alchemist, the consciousness of the Divine in the Alchemist, is critical to this Alchemical process. If this consciousness isn't present, the transformations don't occur and written directions, no matter how well written, don't produce the desired results. Alchemy is not chemistry. My wife was a chemist but never did physical Alchemy. She kept her Alchemy practice separate from her chemistry. We found spiritual Alchemy full sufficient for our objectives, and we were not seeking gold, but rather transformation. The transformation we got.


However, that can't be "proven" either, but those who can see, need no proof. We have no need to prove anything to anybody. Those who need to "know" about out spiritual state and are sufficiently "worthy" can see for themselves. It is irrelevant for anybody else, all those not worthy. Since you apparently can't see for yourself no proof is possible. You previously dismissed the "worthiness" aspect. Therein lies the possibility of knowing in which is the only "proof" possible.

MarkostheGnostic
03-22-2014, 12:52 AM
I would've required chemical and metallurgical tests, but then again such tests were not available save perhaps for dissolving gold with aqua regia. And I would not want to time-travel to a medieval or a renaissance time period anyway. But here we can allow our imaginations and whatever fantasies we fancy, run wild. Lots of people have experienced stigmata too, only it has been pretty well documented that crucifixions were not done with nails in the palms, but through the small bones of the wrist. Biblical writ was not anatomically accurate, but that hasn't stopped innumerable artists and sculptors from depicting crucifixion inaccurately, AND who knows how many impassioned believers from bleeding from the palms of their hands.

OF COURSE there is going to be a "mysterious and never clearly explained substance," because that unknown substance becomes imbued with the sense of the numinous. The sense of awe and mystery may well be the very portal into the goal, or the Goal itself. Many manuscripts speak of the Stone as being found amidst 'the vilest of the vile,' or the most common of things. It may mean that it is the "One Thing" of the Emerald Tablet, (versus the "One Mind"), which in one interpretation refers to space-time or form in its entirety, as in Samsara versus Nirvana in Buddhism. And in its Tibetan form of Buddhism, the Wish-Fulfilling Jewel (Cintamani), and the Diamond Body (Dorje, Visavajra), are approximations of the Philosopher's Stone, its more profound meaning being the Diamond Body, the former parallels the usual meanings attributed to a physical Stone, the latter parallels the spiritual meaning of awareness of Eternal Life in the midst of worldly existence.

"The Digital Dictionary of Buddhism's ruyizhu entry says:
A maṇi-jewel; magical jewel, which manifests whatever one wishes for (Skt. maṇi, cintā-maṇi, cintāmaṇi-ratna). According to one's desires, treasures, clothing and food can be manifested, while sickness and suffering can be removed, water can be purified, etc. It is a metaphor for the teachings and virtues of the Buddha. …" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cintamani

Hellin Hermetist
03-22-2014, 12:52 AM
In reality, if the cheapest most plentiful metal on earth were transmuted into gold, and gold instantly became worthless, it would be replaced with trade items of greater value and the economy would continue on. The wealthy own and trade in many things of great value; gold is just a convenient item to set trade value on.


What you say is valid, and I believe that this was the real reason which made alchemists to guard their secrets so jealously. They said that if they revelal their secret all the people will stop do everyday, work like farming and fishing, but the situation was exactly the opposite. Truth is that if they revelaed theirs secret, and precious metals lost their high value, the alchemists should be the ones who shouldl have to leave their labs and do other type of common jobs, like farming and fishing, to support their everyday lives. And there is nothing worse than that for an experimental scientist - philosopher.

DonSweet
03-22-2014, 06:08 AM
Hellin ...

I would whole-heartedly agree that for many, the idea of a "real" life outside Alchemy may well be "nothing worse" as you say. However, I wouldn't agree that all were like that, nor would I agree that it's the way things "should" be.

I feel ... and it's just my personal perspective (as well as my spiritual path) ... that Alchemy should be integrated intimately into my "real" life. They should be one-in-the-same.

I see my Alchemical work gradually transforming (transmuting?) my very perspective of every-day real life, largely by illuminating perhaps even mundane things as part of a larger Alchemical process. After all, isn't the Universe itself a gigantic flask? Isn't everything in it reacting and transmuting constantly?

At least I think so.

I am enjoying my adventure in Alchemy, which is bringing joy to my life, which is allowing me to see joyful creations in other things around me.

At this very moment, we are witnessing the creation of a new Spring (in the Northern Hemisphere) ... one that has never occurred before. There has never been a Spring 2014. It's new, unique and although there are similarities to past Springs, this one will unfold for us in a completely unique way, all for us to witness and wonder, sometimes even in awe. It is a magical time of creation and new birth, yet this year, literally everything will be "a little different."

Is that really any different than observing our Alchemical processes? Isn't it so, particularly based on nearly endless discussion here and elsewhere, that each Alchemical process for each Alchemist is at least slightly different in some unique and perhaps peculiar way? Isn't it said in at least some of the historical texts that there are as many Alchemical paths as there are Alchemists?

No ... I would not like to (completely?) sequester myself from life and devote my entire being to Alchemy ... unless ... perhaps ... my life "becomes" Alchemy itself.

Besides, it's a practical impossibility, isn't it, to sequester and separate yourself? Where and how would you get food, clothing and shelter if all you did was Alchemical experiments? How would you afford and acquire your equipment, supplies and raw materials?

No ... and just "no" for me ... I do not see Alchemy as a singular pursuit ... UNLESS ... I perceive life itself as Alchemy itself.

I've mentioned "wholistic" thinking before ... and yes, I leave the "w" in place for a reason. What I state above is wholistic ... viewing all of my life as a whole, and do not compartmentalizing its bits and pieces disassociating one piece from another.

I take [a portion of] this lesson from the very body I inhabit. The "organ" of my financial life needs to be in tune with my home life, which needs to be in harmony with my diet, which should be coordinated with my sleep needs, all of which emulate the functions of my stomach, intestines, liver, kidneys and so on. All these "organs" work in concert ... not separately ... not "compartmentalized" ... so the organism of my body functions as a whole ... wholistically.

If I am out of sorts in my life, for whatever reason, I will be out of sorts in my lab. I will be dysfunctional, not being at my peak.

I strive to be in the best of sorts both places, in and out of my lab ... and one very good reason for it is to perform my best while IN my lab. I treasure this path and my work in it. If I am out of sorts in my life, I do NOT work IN my lab. I center myself, settle myself, then enter into my lab activities with a clear mind and a settled heart. I neither rush or allow myself to be overly anxious ... or worse ... lethargic.

I know I may have latched on to one of your statements and perhaps over-expanded on my perspective of it, but the principles I mention above are near-and-dear to me and a very important part of my life AND my work in Alchemy ... whole, complete, balanced ... at least that's the goal.

No ... I would not, and do not, see the "mundane" world as abhorrent or simply avoidable. I make drums, stitch canvas items and sell LED light bulbs for a living. I don't find those things avoidable or even abhorrent. I even took a job for four and a half years recently that was completely outside any career choice, but felt it was an excellent learning experience ... and paid my bills. I'm perfectly content to do "common jobs" like cleaning, cooking and taking care of all the "mundane" aspects of my life since, "wholistically" speaking, my life is -- including Alchemy -- a "whole" thing.

Andro
03-22-2014, 07:21 AM
Isn't it said in at least some of the historical texts that there are as many Alchemical paths as there are Alchemists?

It is said at least in this 'historical' text :) :) :):


Every Alchemist I have ever met in my travels around the world is applying different methods/techniques, while still observing the very same principles.
In other words, there are probably as many 'recipes' as there are Alchemists...

Now seriously...

Regarding some of the points you've raised, Don, I think my life naturally (and gradually) adapts to reflect my Hermetic Path. Yes, life & path are still in ever-adjusting agreement and harmony, but the path dictates life's needs and conditions, and not the other way around. So for me, there is a very clear hierarchy here. It ain't called 'The Royal Art' for nothing. Not that I perceive myself as 'royal', but I am simply no longer able to live 'the common life' anymore. I live a generally simple life, but I have become SO much more selective and discerning with pretty much everything, especially with people. My general love for humanity is not at all conflicted with my need to stay away from most of it. Even if/when I try, most of the time it feels more constructive to speak to a wall.

In the 'past', I used to loath the expression about 'throwing pearls before swine'. Suffice to say that when said/taken in its proper spirit & context, this expression suddenly makes all the sense in the world to me. Some occasional parts of this thread may serve as examples to illustrate the 'why' of it. I don't actually despise anyone, or think that anyone is a 'swine', for that matter, but I only need to look & listen around to see the reason for uttering those words by so many Philosophers, to see that the 'common' world holds little to no interest for me and that I feel much more at home in the company of other like-minded Alchemists.

Actually, I don't think I even have any non-Alchemist friends anymore. Unfortunately, those Alchemist friends I still have are 'scattered' all over the world, and I sometimes have to travel across the seven seas to meet them in person. Otherwise, I have gradually become pretty reserved and secluded in my AFK life, but in a natural and certainly not in a 'bad' way. (My life partner is - obviously - also an Alchemist).

Andro
03-22-2014, 08:33 AM
On a slightly different note, here are some general remarks for this thread so far - I apologize in advance if I am repeating myself:

1. The various 'products' of 'practical'/'lab' Alchemy are definitely 'measurable' in the realm we currently perceive as 'physical', but not only.
Such measurable effects defy (to the best of my knowledge) the 'laws' and expectations of known/common chemistry.

2. While Alchemy IS a study of the (perceived as) physical universe/realm, it does in no way exclude the 'Cause Factors', which are not always/necessarily of a strictly 'physical' origin and nature, in a world where Effects are so much more easily seen (or 'proven') than Causes. Hence, 'How?' may need to be supplemented with 'Why?'. Otherwise, we are merely attempting to affect Effects with Effects, and this is most likely to lead to dead ends.

3. The 'Hermetic Corpus' of literature is NOT limited to the practical/laboratory oriented works. A supplementation with other aspects of Hermetic Philosophy may well be required to obtain the additional & much needed Keys. Personal/direct revelation (e.g. 'Satori') can also play a significant role in forming a more coherent & (w)holistic outlook. So it may be worth reading Hermetic Authors who make NO mention of lab procedures at all, but rather cover the Laws governing Creation, Reality, Generation, etc... One aspect may provide the Keys that the other aspects are missing. Also worth mentioning is that (IMO), all this has (relatively) little to do with 'Jungian' theories, which are IMO (at best) a rather diluted and often misinterpreted version of Ancient Hermetic Gnosis, which (for us) goes back to (at least) ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. And yes, I'm still talking about/including 'practical' Alchemy. Pots & Pans & All, if needed... (beyond which very little may be physically required).

4. Alchemy is much more akin to Agriculture than it is to Lab Chemistry. It is a Natural (albeit accelerated) Way of Generation & Evolution (unlike separating/combining what is already at hand).
The 'Highest Heaven' & 'Primal Cause' is physically corporified and harvested (in the highest, superfluities-lacking concentration/potency that our expertise allows) and used to imbibe/feed/awaken/evolve the 'Lowest Tartarus', the Primal/Central Salt/Earth. Those 'Prime Ingredients' (and how to 'mine'/'render' them into perceived tangible corporeality) are most jealously guarded/concealed in the 'practical' literature, but may well be revealed by studying complementary, 'non-practical' works. Those 'Ingredients' CAN NOT BE MEASURED/PROVEN 'SCIENTIFICALLY', unless first rendered corporeal/tangible by the the artful ways of the Little Farmer/Alchemist. The rest could be indeed regarded as 'woman's work and child's play', at least for up to the level which I seem to have reached so far.
___________________________________________

As a precursor to the following, first this section from my previous post:


In the 'past', I used to loath the expression about 'throwing pearls before swine'. Suffice to say that when said/taken in its proper spirit & context, this expression suddenly makes all the sense in the world to me. Some occasional parts of this thread may serve as examples to illustrate the 'why' of it. I don't actually despise anyone, or think that anyone is a 'swine', for that matter, but I only need to look & listen around to see the reason for uttering those words by so many Philosophers.

5. Now, finishing with a 'Kybalion' quote... it may sound 'harsh' through our cultural lenses, and I would probably use different wording myself - but I prefer to leave the original intact:


"These men have never sought popular approval, nor numbers of followers. They are indifferent to these things, for they know how few there are in each generation who are ready for the truth, or who would recognize it if it were presented to them. They reserve the “strong meat for men,” while others furnish the “milk for babes.” They reserve their pearls of wisdom for the few elect, who recognize their value and who wear them in their crowns, instead of casting them before the materialistic vulgar swine, who would trample them in the mud and mix them with their disgusting mental food. But still these men have never forgotten or overlooked the original teachings of Hermes, regarding the passing on of the words of truth to those ready to receive it.
...........................

And again: “When the ears of the student are ready to hear, then cometh the lips to fill them with wisdom.”
But their customary attitude has always been strictly in accordance with the other Hermetic aphorism, also in The Kybalion:
“The lips of Wisdom are closed, except to the ears of Understanding.”

There are those who have criticized this attitude of the Hermetists, and who have claimed that they did not manifest the proper spirit in their policy of seclusion and reticence. But a moment's glance back over the pages of history will show the wisdom of the Masters, who knew the folly of attempting to teach to the world that which it was neither ready or willing to receive.”
_____________________

Finally, I have worked/dedicated/'sacrificed' a lot to barely even reach some sort of 'Beginner' status in this Great Art. In this regard, I make no apologies.

Hellin Hermetist
03-22-2014, 01:43 PM
No ... I would not like to (completely?) sequester myself from life and devote my entire being to Alchemy ... unless ... perhaps ... my life "becomes" Alchemy itself.


I didnt speak about alchemists only, but about other scientists/inventors that tried to unfathom this or that natural secret as well. Tesla for example has said that he was sleeping everynight from 3am to 7am and was working the other 20 hours of the day at its lab most time of the year.




Besides, it's a practical impossibility, isn't it, to sequester and separate yourself? Where and how would you get food, clothing and shelter if all you did was Alchemical experiments? How would you afford and acquire your equipment, supplies and raw materials?


Thats an easy one. They shall sell their lab created precious metals and buy everything they need with the money they should earn from that trade.

DonSweet
03-22-2014, 02:57 PM
In re to both your posts, Androgynus ...

Brilliant.

Inasmuch as we may agree, disagreement is strikingly small, and I believe simply a matter of perspective based on our individual positions on a [cyclical, or perhaps even spiral] timeline.

Even before I logged on this morning, I was thinking about the concept of servitude ... service to others ... which is a subject you broach in your responses. To me, servitude can have one (and only one) of two diametrically opposed natures ... that of forced/coerced or that of voluntary.

But before I say more, it's necessary to connect servitude to solitude, another subject you broach. Or, perhaps we'll call it fraternalization, since solitude is a non-possible state.

In all this, we are talking about "associations," which I think we can agree are unavoidable, regardless of their nature ... voluntary or involuntary. A "perfect" example of this is the fact that my phone rang as I was typing this ... a toll free number ... which is either a bill collector or telemarketing. As such, this was a miniscule aspect of the Universe attempting to "associate" with me, despite my rejection/deflection of any such association. In other words, like you with your disassociation of non-like-minded people, I voluntarily un-volunteered association with whatever entity was trying to get my attention ... but ... the difference between your process and my process may only be minor. You may have your telephone off, which is merely a degree difference. Your "filter" would be similar, but different.

I cannot imagine, based on what you've said, that you'd reject someone that approached you with a question "open" to your areas of interest. Over time, although it hasn't been an easy lesson, I too have learned that association with "non-initiates" of a raised consciousness can be like talking to a wall (I often say "brick") ... but again, there may be a slight difference in our perspective/approach.

Since my interaction with these non-initiates is inevitable, I cannot/willnot allow that interaction to affect me negatively. A negative perspective begets a negative perspective and I have learned that this kind of "emulation" is not CONstructive, but DEstructive and impairs or even prevents my personal evolution. I am a natural empath -- taking on the very feelings of others regardless of their negative/positive nature -- and have to guard against "becoming" them when I interact with them.

In other words, if I find myself talking to a brick, I have to be careful not to become the brick.

But in the end, non-initiate status or not, we are talking about human beings here. Whether they know it or not, whether they have activated it or not, each possesses the "mechanism" for consciousness. Now obviously, we are not merely talking about merely being physically awake, but the state of having crossed the threshold of cognitive consciousness.

Although I can think of a few, there aren't many positions in life much more mundane or "dross" than a clerk at a convenience store. Our interaction with such people -- unless we are serviced by servants -- is inevitable. Recalling my servitude/solitude points above, I can either choose to remain separated from this person by merely conducting my business with them minimally and retracting to my solitude, or, I can choose to be of service to THEM simply by means of my method of interacting. By virtue of the fact that I am dealing with a human being not a [literal] brick, I have learned to choose "serve."

As an empath, it is not difficult for me to imagine what this poor soul's life must be like behind that counter, particularly since I have held positions myself that were utterly mundane ... excruciatingly so. I recall the pain and personally relate to it. Tacking on compassion to my empathy, I cannot help but jolt this person out of the deep, agonizing trance they live in ... or at least make the attempt.

Nine-times-out-of-ten a witty remark or funny comment will brighten their eyes for at least a moment, which is usually followed by a witty remark of their own. For that moment, they were poked out of their agonizing slumber. For me, this takes a potentially mundane and perhaps even negative moment and turns it positive. Although this may have given this person a bright millisecond, in a way it was also a selfish act since I selfishly, consciously chose to keep my experience positive.

Did I make a project of this person? Did I take on the problems of this brick and try and mold or manipulate it into a fully cognizant being? Naturally not ... but ... neither did I allow this non-conscious being to impair my own consciousness.

In-as-much-as this rambling of mine may appear completely disconnected from Alchemy, I would suggest there is a direct connection.

Based on things you have said, Androgynus, it appears as though you see some level of consciousness in every level and aspect of the Universe. That literally, when you are working in your lab, you are "talking" to your evolving tinctures/elixirs and even to the equipment that is producing it. You see this as a living process, actually producing "evolved life."

In fact, you and I would likely agree that, in the end, The Philosopher's Stone itself is "living."

All this interminable blathering of mine has been to make a connection that I sense you have been attempting to disconnect from ... disconnecting from the dross and connecting to the evolved -- an effort I [U]totally relate to.

I would cite, however, that even the Alchemical processes we treasure are never disassociated from the dross. They are intimately connected. You cannot have one without the other. You cannot have The Philosopher's Stone itself without its root dross.

Such is the metaphor for living, is it not?

Andro
03-22-2014, 03:11 PM
The Alchemical processes we treasure are never disassociated from the dross. They are intimately connected.

The 'Alchemical Shortcut' is about connecting the most (seemingly) remote, yet in fact closest 'Extremes'/'Oppo-Sames'. The Ouroboros' Head with its Tail.

The 'Highest Heaven' with the 'Lowest Earth', prior to any sort of Specification, Evolution or 'Individualization'... (Oops, was that a Jungian slip? :))

As for the 'dross', it is equally treasure (perhaps not 'right now', but eventually), as All Matter is One Matter, is No Matter.

So it's not a question of (relative) IF, but rather a question of (relative) WHEN.

JDP
03-22-2014, 03:54 PM
At least one of the points is that the divine is not provable in either direction. It can be demonstrated (experienced). As the same spiritual aspect of the divine is involved in Alchemy it is at the root of what you are insisting on. Written directions without "understanding" that brings in the spiritual aspect, that allows alchemical processes to take place rather than merely chemical processes, are worthless ands can't produce the desired effectiveness. Alchemy happens when the local "world" rules change to allow the alchemical process to occur. The Alchemist, the consciousness of the Divine in the Alchemist, is critical to this Alchemical process. If this consciousness isn't present, the transformations don't occur and written directions, no matter how well written, don't produce the desired results. Alchemy is not chemistry. My wife was a chemist but never did physical Alchemy. She kept her Alchemy practice separate from her chemistry. We found spiritual Alchemy full sufficient for our objectives, and we were not seeking gold, but rather transformation. The transformation we got.


However, that can't be "proven" either, but those who can see, need no proof. We have no need to prove anything to anybody. Those who need to "know" about out spiritual state and are sufficiently "worthy" can see for themselves. It is irrelevant for anybody else, all those not worthy. Since you apparently can't see for yourself no proof is possible. You previously dismissed the "worthiness" aspect. Therein lies the possibility of knowing in which is the only "proof" possible.

Again, these are all assumptions and theories based on the assertions of people who themselves never proved that such a thing was a requirement to succeed in alchemy. Alchemy is not "chemistry", true, but it does not necessarily imply that it requires a "supernatural" element for that distinction to be justified. It could simply be that the alchemists discovered things that chemists totally failed to discover. We also have a very good example of this in what can be labelled by the antiquated word "chymistry" rather than "chemistry". By "chymistry" I mean here the laboratory practices and methods of 17th and 18th century experimenters like Glauber, Becher, Kunckel, Kellner, Creiling, Wallerius, etc. Most of of these "chymists" never claimed to have found the Philosophers' Stone, however, they do assert that they discovered other ways to achieve transmutations. None of them invoke any "Divine" or supernatural requirement to achieve this. Taking a note from the alchemists constant attacks against "sophists", "multipliers", "puffers", etc. they distinguish their methods and achievements from those of "vulgar chymistry" (what we may reasonably call the true precursor of modern chemistry, which also denies that transmutation can happen by means of reactions between substances), which could not achieve such results, but unlike many alchemists these "chymists" did not feel the need to conjure up any necessity for the supernatural to be involved. The distinction between their "chymistry" and "vulgar chymistry" was simply a matter of better investigational skills and methods, at least where it concerns the issue of the transmutation of metals.

DonSweet
03-22-2014, 03:54 PM
Thoughtful responses Hellin ...

... and I believe my post to Androgynus may have some relation to your first point.

As for an aspect of that first point, I too treasure Tesla's life work and example. But I will remind you that he died a virtual pauper and alone. Self-sacrificing may be noble and even [ideally] a paramount goal, but I would personally not recommend self-destruction.

This next point in no way demeans his life work, but if he had taken the "practical aspect" of living into account -- the fact that J.P. Morgan, his financier, mandated profitability in his creations -- perhaps those creations stood a better chance of reaching the mainstream sooner. Idealism is perhaps wonderful, but is often completely disassociated from practical ... and I think you can see that I make no disassociations of one thing from another thing. All things are associated in a "unified universe."

As for your second point, we differ here ... and in my case, most vigorously.

Since I consider Alchemy to be a sacred spiritual path (not all do), I am also compelled to "disconnect" it from money ... a fallacy of my own idealism.

To me, since it is spiritually sacred and its goal (in my view) is service to others, I cannot and willnot "sell" its products ... or ... more precisely ... lay the foundation of my Alchemical pursuits on the concept of profit.

Does this contradict what I just said about Tesla?

Let me show how it doesn't ...

Tesla's philosophical foundation was the EXclusion of the practical, leading to shockingly astounding accomplishments. As nearly as he could, he turned his back on practical and devoted himself to his work. But even HE had to sleep ... those four hours a day. That inexorably connects him to the practical, which he did his best to deny, or at least to "departicipate."

But I would conclude that despite those shockingly astounding accomplishments, they were not "perfect."

The computer I'm typing on is not powered by the free, limitless energy he manifest ... a hundred years ago.

And all this due to the fact that he disassociated himself from the practical, mundane or dross.

J.P. Morgan may have been repugnant, but his ilk was the predominant force in the "flask" in which Tesla lived. Still is today.

One thing I have learned is to observe the Masters [again] wholistically ... not just to observe what they did right, but also to observe what they may have done wrong (or incompletely).

In terms of "profiting" from Alchemy, I chose not to sell its products directly -- tinctures for dollars -- but to sell PERIPHERAL by-products, such as my woodworking skills or other creative pursuits that have been enhanced by my Alchemical work.

In other words, I have acknowledged the "dualistic nature" of the Universe, and elevate Alchemy only to the point of INdirect connection to the dross, but never allowing disconnection from the dross.

In still more words ... it is two things at the same time, not one, single thing alone.

And Hellin ... I am grateful for the opportunity to interact with people like yourself. You make me think.

JDP
03-22-2014, 04:15 PM
I would've required chemical and metallurgical tests, but then again such tests were not available save perhaps for dissolving gold with aqua regia.

No, they were certainly more sophisticated than that. Since antiquity it has been well known how to recognize real gold and silver from imitations. The ancients knew about "rusting" (base metals and most alloys beaten into sheets and exposed to the atmosphere or vinegar vapors eventually get surface corrosion, but gold does not) malleability, density, cupellation and cementation. A combination of these is more than sufficient to spot real gold and silver from the phonies. The Middle Ages saw the introduction of "aqua fortis", "aqua regia" and fusion with sulfur/sulfides to the arsenal of assaying tests, thus making assaying even more effective.

Hellin Hermetist
03-22-2014, 06:52 PM
As for an aspect of that first point, I too treasure Tesla's life work and example. But I will remind you that he died a virtual pauper and alone. Self-sacrificing may be noble and even [ideally] a paramount goal, but I would personally not recommend self-destruction.


Tesla spent his last years at one of the suites of Astoria hotel, one of the most luxurious and expensive hotels of New York. So he didnt exactly die in the streets, alone and with no money. He may didnt have the 2 million dollars needed to construct his particle beam weapon, but he still had enough resources to perform experiments of that kind in a small scale. Being alone, and maybe isolated of other ppl, was part of his character, esrpecially at his later years, but as modern doctors affirm he also must be suffer from OCD or some similar kind of mental illness. At least he never became really menatlly unstable like Howard Hughes, another genius engineer, did




This next point in no way demeans his life work, but if he had taken the "practical aspect" of living into account -- the fact that J.P. Morgan, his financier, mandated profitability in his creations -- perhaps those creations stood a better chance of reaching the mainstream sooner. Idealism is perhaps wonderful, but is often completely disassociated from practical ... and I think you can see that I make no disassociations of one thing from another thing. All things are associated in a "unified universe."


I count Tesla firtsly as a practical man and secondly as an idealist. The Wanderclyffe tower was a very real Construction, built by real men, and all the experiments performed there gave real and calculable results. See Tesla's diary of his experimenst at Colorado Springs. Morgan stopped his financial support because the succesful outcome of the Project forecasted the exclusion of copper wires for the transmission of electricity. Tesla himself has given some details about that incident in some of his writings and epistles.




Tesla's philosophical foundation was the EXclusion of the practical, leading to shockingly astounding accomplishments. As nearly as he could, he turned his back on practical and devoted himself to his work. But even HE had to sleep ... those four hours a day. That inexorably connects him to the practical, which he did his best to deny, or at least to "departicipate."


Sorry but here I got confused. What do you mean by the "exclusion of the practical". Tesla was a practical engineer, who built real, working machines. He didnt preach some abstract metaphysical doctrine which can not create any tangible result in the physical world.




The computer I'm typing on is not powered by the free, limitless energy he manifest ... a hundred years ago.


Thats quite logical, as Tesla never tapped, or said that he made manifest any kind of limitless energy source. Thats a myth created my modern authors, most of which arent professional electricians. Again see his Colorado Springs diary if you want to know what he exactly did.



As for your second point, we differ here ... and in my case, most vigorously.

Since I consider Alchemy to be a sacred spiritual path (not all do), I am also compelled to "disconnect" it from money ... a fallacy of my own idealism.


I didnt try to prove some point, as some of the alchemists themselves have admitted that they made a Trade with the precious metals they created in their lab.

"I remember once going, in the disguise of a foreign merchant to a goldsmith's shop, and offering him 600 pounds worth of our pure silver for sale. He subjected it to the usual tests, and then said: "This silver is artificially prepared." When I asked him why he thought so, his answer was: "I am not a novice in my profession, and know very well the exact quality of the silver which is brought from the different mines." When I heard these words I took myself away with great secrecy and dispatch, leaving the silver in the hands of the goldsmith. On this account, and by reason of the many and great difficulties which beset us, the possessors of this Stone, on every side, we do elect to remain hidden, and will communicate the Art to those who are worthily covetous of our secrets, and then mark what public good will befall." (Philalethes, Open Enterance to the Closed Palace of the King).

Here the author admits that he went to sell not half or one pound of alchemical silver to support his everyday needs, but 600 pounds of his Silver, quantity who shall let him get enough Money to buy a castle for himself. He also says that reasons like this one makes him to want to remain hidden and not to teach his secret openly. If he was really indifferent about the high incomes he got from that kind of Trade, he could reveal the whole procedure in clear language and make precious metals lose their high value. Jacques Coeure seems that was even more greedy than the aforementioned author.

DonSweet
03-22-2014, 10:30 PM
Hellin ...

I'm digesting the majority of your post, but a couple of initial reactions/clarifications. None meant to be argumentative, naturally ...

"Pauper" ... a relative perception, which is why I used the word "virtual." And I'd include part of that pauper-ness in his choice to be a recluse, as he was a "social pauper." Frankly, if I'd been beaten up like he was, I may have made the same choices.

"Practical" ... What I meant by that was not that he didn't create practical inventions, producing them with practical methods, but was referring more to his application of some/several of them in the financial/social/cultural strata as not practical. Yes, he won the Alternating Current war with Edison and many of his other [particularly early] discoveries worked their way into everyday life for human beings, but his more advanced work -- earth-shattering stuff -- was squashed by the powers-that-be largely because Tesla saw, understood and rejected that power structure.

"No, you should institute these devices because it's the right thing to do, not because you want to make money."

I'm paraphrasing, of course, but a wide variety of biographical sources would support the observation.

I believe that very attitude is why he eventually won out over Edison ... who (again, only in my opinion) was a narcissistic, greedy, self-aggrandizing media hound that leached off the labors and ingenuity of his workers. He was a CEO, a "corporatist," and had long since abrogated any "inventiveness" he'd started out with, seeking fame and fortune instead. Edison didn't give a damn about anyone but Edison.

Tesla was a do-the-right-thing moralist working for the betterment of Mankind. That's why he didn't patent things. He literally meant them as gifts. However, all this warring throughout his life wore heavily on him, in my opinion. The resistance to practical I discuss, is not in his actual work, but in the way some of his most important work was quashed.

As for more response, it'll have to simmer a bit more ... and that's a good thing. Like I said, you make me think.

DonSweet
03-23-2014, 05:10 AM
Okay ...

Not to muck things up, but more of a curiosity, I'm wondering how many might chime in more deeply on their non-physical aspects of Alchemy ... what some personal perspectives might be. Note that I've said "non-physical" and not spiritual. They are not necessarily interchangeable (but they are related).

Below is a photograph of my freshly finished crystal ball stand. Right off the bat, I'd like to dispel any pop-culture perceptions of such a thing. Obviously, the first thing that comes to mind is the gypsy gazing into one to tell someone's fortune. Immediately wipe that image out of your mind. That's not even close to why I have one, why I made a stand or why I have chosen to include such a thing in my Alchemy lab. Perhaps I should refer to it as a crystal sphere, deflecting negative/primitive connotations.

I have "wanted" a crystal ball or sphere since I can remember. I can't explain it ... just as I can't explain my fascination with flasks, beakers and scientific equipment. But, as I said, it has nothing to do with gypsies or fortune-telling. It goes back to another early life experience/interest -- a glancing blow in my youth, if you will -- with geology ... a time when I was fascinated with rocks, as many children often are. Growing up in Ohio and living in farm country for a couple of years at age nine and ten, I had the opportunity to see, feel and touch a fairly wide variety of rocks ... and some fossils (so many in one place they were used as gravel for a walking path).

The idea of a "rounded crystal" just held a fascination of a sort all these years, and as time passed and I matured and learned, I realized it was the duality, the complimentary contradiction the crystal ball represented. That was really the "only" mystic quality about it. Only is in quotes over the fact that I haven't slammed any doors on potential.

Rekindling my interest in chemistry/Alchemy last year, I simply HAD to add a crystal ball to the items I was collecting. You could say it was a need bordering on a compulsion. As I read, refreshed and researched Alchemy, it became apparent I'd made the right choice. Many Adepts and Masters were/are deep-rooted in the non-physical aspects of Alchemy ... "As Above, So Below" ... and the esoteric/ethereal aspects of Salt, Sulphur and Mercury.

I saw and see this very duality of Above/Below in the ball. It is a symbol (to me) of both unity, "Oneness," and that break-away unrelenting Duality we all deal with. It is also representative of the intervention of consciousness. This ball is not naturally a sphere and must be formed so by an intervention and a process by intentional, conscious being(s). Is this not Alchemy itself? The intervention of consciousness to initiate (or accelerate) a process that would not otherwise occur?

I don't know about anyone else, but I need reminders of things, even the basics, such as Oneness, Duality, natural cycles and even the rudiments of Salt, Sulphur and Mercury, when I'm contemplating my Alchemical processes (and contemplation is a HUGE part of my process).

I kept this in mind creating the stand for the sphere/ball. In a way, I had no plan for its outcome or final appearance. I had only seen one candle stand in a local store that gave me a general idea where to go with it. I put the wood in the lathe and went to work ... with only the sketchiest of plans. Essentially, I let the piece design itself through me. With that, the only real influence I put over it was for it to represent, in some fashion, the rudiments of Salt, Sulphur and Mercury.

I'm wondering of anyone can cite those three elements graphically represented in the piece. In fact, there are two representations of this "Sacred Principle of Three" in the piece, one of which merely evolved and was not planned.

I'm also wondering if anyone catches some of the non-graphic/non-visible representations. (Hint: think cyclical fields of energy or even Universal Construct.)

Anyway ... regardless ... I present the piece for your entertainment, comment or contemplation ... or even ridicule ... since I'm literally ready for anything. I have "spiritual" observations to make, but I'm sticking to merely "non-physical" for the moment ... but run with the ball (pun intended) if you like.

http://i1295.photobucket.com/albums/b633/DonSweet11/SANY4308_zps4e899b1c.jpg

MarkostheGnostic
03-24-2014, 06:14 AM
;)
No, they were certainly more sophisticated than that. Since antiquity it has been well known how to recognize real gold and silver from imitations. The ancients knew about "rusting" (base metals and most alloys beaten into sheets and exposed to the atmosphere or vinegar vapors eventually get surface corrosion, but gold does not) malleability, density, cupellation and cementation. A combination of these is more than sufficient to spot real gold and silver from the phonies. The Middle Ages saw the introduction of "aqua fortis", "aqua regia" and fusion with sulfur/sulfides to the arsenal of assaying tests, thus making assaying even more effective.

Not exactly spectroscopic analysis. Nitric, Sulphuric, and Hydrochloric acids were known and used, as you say, but the continued 'belief' that medieval alchemists possessed a knowledge of non-nuclear transmutation is no different than the hallowed beliefs in Atlantis and the Hyperborean myths associated with their 'super science' which included 'occult' knowledge, or the biblical transmutation of water to wine, or physical resuscitation from death. We are still dealing with mythic, archetypal themes which have assumed newer vessels (literally) for embodying those themes.

I have a framed pic of Hennig Brand kneeling before a receiving flask of urine-derived Phosphorus (chemical symbol 'P' :D ), above two figurines depicting the archetypes of 'young witch' and 'wizard' (1 part magus, 1 part alchemist) and I have performed spagyric experiments, as well as having explored the practices associated with witchcraft and ceremonial magic, so I am not being simply dismissive, only interpretive. But then, I am not a materialist but a philosophical idealist with roots in Neoplatonism, Kabbalism, Gnostic Christianity, Buddhism, and Entheogens. I never seek to reduce the Truth to a material datum.

http://i60.tinypic.com/2gu9vep.jpg

MarkostheGnostic
03-24-2014, 06:30 AM
More "dollies" as my wife would say. I found this carved and painted alchemist in an antique store in Memphis, TN when I applied for training in Analytical Psychology. Everyone from Miami was rejected, so we went antiquing to forget a very bad day (that turned out to be the right thing). I also found a pair of mushroom book ends. Both finds defined the following two decades of inner work. As for the psychedelic aspect, note a 'peacock's tail' feather in the retort. Symbolic of the visionary state that heralds ego-death, and resurrection.

http://i59.tinypic.com/27x2koo.jpg

DonSweet
03-24-2014, 02:11 PM
Have to say ...

In rereading several of the posts in this thread, I am in awe of some of the profound wisdom being expressed. For a while there, I was focused on countering a negativity, and as time has passed with review (although I saw it at the time), I see others making a similar effort ... "see" meaning see more clearly and in more depth. All of which brings up a point ...

All one needs to do in observing what can be perceived as a negative is to alter that perception to perceive it as a positive.

But also, without the negative, the positive is literally not perceptible.

It took me about five minutes to properly compose those two sentences.

I have expressed gratitude in this forum to its members for "making me think." But it is important to note that it is all, not just a few ... "all" including the negative.

The negative illustrates what I should NOT think, and clearly defines a pathway forward.

Again, this inexorably connects me (my Alchemical/Life path) to the dross.

Do I "become" the dross? Do I "live" it?

Only inasmuch as it's recognized as a part of the whole.

Again ...

Thank you.

DonSweet
03-24-2014, 02:26 PM
Markos-the-Gnostic ...

Great displays! I'm loving it. It also took me a minute to see the license plate since the glare was a bit intense.

Terrific library, too. Just by reading a few titles, I'm jealous. Lots of great information there.

Also, "... never seek to reduce ... ," has profound connotations.

If exclusion is ignorance denying Truth, then inclusion can only mean [at the very least] the evolution towards Truth.

MarkostheGnostic
03-24-2014, 03:24 PM
Thanks for the kind words. Most visitors to our home completely ignore our books. We are living in a very anti-intellectual place, Miami, and our respective karmic predicaments that took us here, individually, are lengthy stories. But whenever I encounter someone on line who appreciates books, I want to invite them over, even virtually. I would like nothing better than to visit people who also have libraries that they allow me to browse in. My 2nd analyst had an outstanding library, which I endeavored to match, and I have in the past 23 years since he died.

"Jealous," or 'envy' is a figure of speech, I know, but after immolating my original occult library in 1977 during my seminary stay (with Wizard® brand barbecue lighter fluid), I eventually rebuilt my occult library. During some 8 years of Jungian analysis with 3 Zurich-trained analysts, I also accrued a number of alchemy books. A few years ago I began to practice spagyrics after having read Mark Stavish's book, closely followed by Manfred Junius', Frater Albertus', and Robert Allen Bartlett's books. And yes, ALCHEMY has been my Florida license plate for over 20 years, but only 2 people have ever asked me about it, and one semi-literate and possibly home-sick farm girl in a pickup truck once tooted me at a red light while at a stop light, shouting, "ALLEGANY County?" The top was down on my Miata, and I heard her, but I didn't want to embarrass her for her projection, or lack of spelling skills. :p

http://i61.tinypic.com/w0i83p.jpg

http://i60.tinypic.com/288pahi.jpg

http://i57.tinypic.com/2uyg8b6.jpg

My wife is also an avid reader, although she prefers the simplicity of Taosim, and understands the meaning of Tao, as The Way, to be identical to the original name for Christianity. When we decided to live together before marrying, I built her a library in our hallway, so we're both bibliophiles who are running out of space for books but I for one have enough books that I have not finished or begun yet. With my recent forced retirement and an income slashed by 2/3, my purchasing of books has slowed way, way down.

http://i57.tinypic.com/282ov8z.jpg








Markos-the-Gnostic ...

Great displays! I'm loving it. It also took me a minute to see the license plate since the glare was a bit intense.

Terrific library, too. Just by reading a few titles, I'm jealous. Lots of great information there.

Also, "... never seek to reduce ... ," has profound connotations.

If exclusion is ignorance denying Truth, then inclusion can only mean [at the very least] the evolution towards Truth.

JDP
03-24-2014, 05:05 PM
Have to say ...

In rereading several of the posts in this thread, I am in awe of some of the profound wisdom being expressed. For a while there, I was focused on countering a negativity, and as time has passed with review (although I saw it at the time), I see others making a similar effort ... "see" meaning see more clearly and in more depth. All of which brings up a point ...

All one needs to do in observing what can be perceived as a negative is to alter that perception to perceive it as a positive.

But also, without the negative, the positive is literally not perceptible.

It took me about five minutes to properly compose those two sentences.

I have expressed gratitude in this forum to its members for "making me think." But it is important to note that it is all, not just a few ... "all" including the negative.

The negative illustrates what I should NOT think, and clearly defines a pathway forward.

Again, this inexorably connects me (my Alchemical/Life path) to the dross.

Do I "become" the dross? Do I "live" it?

Only inasmuch as it's recognized as a part of the whole.

Again ...

Thank you.

Apparently to you: logic, common sense, empirical experience, empirical evidence, critical thinking, etc. = "negativity"

JDP
03-24-2014, 05:13 PM
;)

Not exactly spectroscopic analysis. Nitric, Sulphuric, and Hydrochloric acids were known and used, as you say,

Spectroscopic analysis is hardly needed to identify real gold or silver. People have been doing it since long before spectroscopes existed. Also, it's way more than mineral acids, people were identifying real gold and silver by means of cupellation and cementation long before.


but the continued 'belief' that medieval alchemists possessed a knowledge of non-nuclear transmutation is no different than the hallowed beliefs in Atlantis and the Hyperborean myths associated with their 'super science' which included 'occult' knowledge, or the biblical transmutation of water to wine, or physical resuscitation from death. We are still dealing with mythic, archetypal themes which have assumed newer vessels (literally) for embodying those themes.

But unlike "Hyperborean myths" or resuscitation from death, the alchemists assert that they could -and some apparently did, if we give credit to many eye-witness accounts of transmutations- prove the reality of their claims. So alchemy holds a rather special position within those "difficult-to-believe" claims of past ages. Unlike so many others, its claims are of a more tangible and physical nature, liable to be put to the test.

DonSweet
03-24-2014, 06:02 PM
JDP ...

Exclusion = Ignorance = Negativity

MarkostheGnostic
03-24-2014, 11:05 PM
Spectroscopic analysis is hardly needed to identify real gold or silver. People have been doing it since long before spectroscopes existed. Also, it's way more than mineral acids, people were identifying real gold and silver by means of cupellation and cementation long before.

But unlike "Hyperborean myths" or resuscitation from death, the alchemists assert that they could -and some apparently did, if we give credit to many eye-witness accounts of transmutations- prove the reality of their claims. So alchemy holds a rather special position within those "difficult-to-believe" claims of past ages. Unlike so many others, its claims are of a more tangible and physical nature, liable to be put to the test.

I am really not interested in debating the development of chemistry here. These things can be found in any good history of chemistry book. But again, chemistry is not alchemy, but the ultimate claims of alchemy, contrary to your opinion, are on a par with the claims of every other mytho-religious system. Rarely, systems speak to 'immortality,' like the "immortal fœtus" in Taoist inner alchemy (nei tan), but speak rather to the Realization of one's True Nature (Buddhism, Advaita, Pseudo-Gnostic Thomistic Christianity). Orthodox Christianity speaks of entering into "Eternal Life," not personal immortality, although popular religion for many Christians entertains thoughts of a literal 'Pearly Gates,' and 'golden roads,' or some perpetual church picnic with one's loved ones in an unending duration. But these are the ultimate claims.

The more immediate claims for extreme longevity, and a 'pill of immortality' belongs to the inner alchemy of the Chinese Taoists, as it does in the Western alchemical tradition with the Flamels and Fulcanelli for example. Nicholas Flamel, was a humble scribe and seller of manuscripts who, legend says, suddenly possessed enough gold to build orphanages and hospitals, and who is said not to have died even now,some 600 years after his recorded death, his wife Perenelle the same. A further legend says his grave was opened and a heavy rock found, with no human remains. These stories have fascinated many people over the centuries for very good psychological reasons: such stories meet the primary wish fulfillments of most of humanity - health, wealth, and immortality. The stories employ an average man who encounters a numinous book, rather than a unique specie of human being said to have the hallmarks of divinity (e.g., virgin birth, anomalous astronomical phenomena, and prophesies of such a birth), whether the Messiah of the Hebrews or an Enlightened avatar of Brahmanical religion. The man doesn't die, neither does his beloved wife, and they are without want or fear. Thus, old age, sickness, and death, the three main sourced of suffering in the Buddhist tradition, are annihilated by the fulfillment of all desire, not the transcendence of desire. This is a trap if it were possible, and no doubt vampiric (as myths of vampires, or the story of Dorian Gray illustrate), since there would have to be some kind of debt paid to the source of such boons. Certainly it would not be the result of a mechanical process, but an integration of the mind-body of the alchemist with unknown forces or aspects of Reality, but if not the impartation of blessedness, than what?!

In a sense, you are correct that "alchemy holds a rather special position," but not as you would have us believe. It is unique in that like the Golden Fleece of mythic fame, it provides its possessor the fulfillment of every desire, since every material benefit would seem to flow from an immortal life lived in health and with wealth. This is quite the opposite of transcending all desires, including the desire for existence. But, it remains in the realm of physically unrealized myth, in the realm of possibility, not actuality, regardless of "eye-witness accounts" that you mention. Ask even a rookie cop about the accuracy of "eye-witnesses" and you will get the pith of inaccuracy and incredulity.

I have met individuals who were content with their lives and who have accepted and integrated their mortality such that death was no longer considered their mortal enemy. I'm not only talking about a few genuine spiritual people, but someone like my Great Uncle Herman who lived to 106. At age 103, I asked him for any philosophical advice that I might benefit from in terms of longevity, and he said to me "I think you are more suited to the task of philosophy." The problem was, he was living experience, and I was seeking some kind of epistemological knowledge from him that he was not in possession of as far as he was concerned. Herman said, "If I don't wake up tomorrow morning, it's no big deal."

For certain kinds of people (like me, and quite possibly for you), a love of esotericism and mystery that suggest whole orders of existence below the surface appearances of nature has a tremendous intellectual appeal. Some of the most brilliant minds get sucked into believing that their heroes are more a matter of hope, than of facticity. I have heard from Clark Heinrich on FB, that Baba Hari Das, the yogi who worked around Ram Dass' Guru, Neem Karolie Baba left the presence of this great Guru because their was a certain amount of trickery and fraud employed to give the illusion of omniscience. Ken Wilber got pulled into Da Free John's trip. Ram Dass got deceived by Joya for quite a while. I saw a guy I grew up with do full-face pranams before a picture of that fat little adolescence Guru Maharaji. That kid would ride around on a sit-down lawn mower in Long Island, NY, and when approached, would ask people, "Do you know the secret of Life, Spirit, and Death?" Yes, of course, I got enlightened the same way.

Lastly, We all have hopes for messiahs, gurus, and proof of spiritual verities in physical people, places, processes, and products. A material view of the Stone as the Tibetan Wish-Fulfilling Jewel is no different. It will remain as mercurial a 'thing' as the Tibetan Jewel, and for exactly the same reasons. The alchemical Goal needs to be reinterpreted as the inner equivalent to the relief and subtle ecstasy that we would experience IF we were actually in possession of a physical Philosopher's Stone complete with all its miraculous properties. This seems the only practical path to tread.

JDP
03-25-2014, 06:12 PM
I am really not interested in debating the development of chemistry here. These things can be found in any good history of chemistry book. But again, chemistry is not alchemy, but the ultimate claims of alchemy, contrary to your opinion, are on a par with the claims of every other mytho-religious system. Rarely, systems speak to 'immortality,' like the "immortal fœtus" in Taoist inner alchemy (nei tan), but speak rather to the Realization of one's True Nature (Buddhism, Advaita, Pseudo-Gnostic Thomistic Christianity). Orthodox Christianity speaks of entering into "Eternal Life," not personal immortality, although popular religion for many Christians entertains thoughts of a literal 'Pearly Gates,' and 'golden roads,' or some perpetual church picnic with one's loved ones in an unending duration. But these are the ultimate claims.

The more immediate claims for extreme longevity, and a 'pill of immortality' belongs to the inner alchemy of the Chinese Taoists, as it does in the Western alchemical tradition with the Flamels and Fulcanelli for example. Nicholas Flamel, was a humble scribe and seller of manuscripts who, legend says, suddenly possessed enough gold to build orphanages and hospitals, and who is said not to have died even now,some 600 years after his recorded death, his wife Perenelle the same. A further legend says his grave was opened and a heavy rock found, with no human remains. These stories have fascinated many people over the centuries for very good psychological reasons: such stories meet the primary wish fulfillments of most of humanity - health, wealth, and immortality. The stories employ an average man who encounters a numinous book, rather than a unique specie of human being said to have the hallmarks of divinity (e.g., virgin birth, anomalous astronomical phenomena, and prophesies of such a birth), whether the Messiah of the Hebrews or an Enlightened avatar of Brahmanical religion. The man doesn't die, neither does his beloved wife, and they are without want or fear. Thus, old age, sickness, and death, the three main sourced of suffering in the Buddhist tradition, are annihilated by the fulfillment of all desire, not the transcendence of desire. This is a trap if it were possible, and no doubt vampiric (as myths of vampires, or the story of Dorian Gray illustrate), since there would have to be some kind of debt paid to the source of such boons. Certainly it would not be the result of a mechanical process, but an integration of the mind-body of the alchemist with unknown forces or aspects of Reality, but if not the impartation of blessedness, than what?!

In a sense, you are correct that "alchemy holds a rather special position," but not as you would have us believe. It is unique in that like the Golden Fleece of mythic fame, it provides its possessor the fulfillment of every desire, since every material benefit would seem to flow from an immortal life lived in health and with wealth. This is quite the opposite of transcending all desires, including the desire for existence. But, it remains in the realm of physically unrealized myth, in the realm of possibility, not actuality, regardless of "eye-witness accounts" that you mention. Ask even a rookie cop about the accuracy of "eye-witnesses" and you will get the pith of inaccuracy and incredulity.

I have met individuals who were content with their lives and who have accepted and integrated their mortality such that death was no longer considered their mortal enemy. I'm not only talking about a few genuine spiritual people, but someone like my Great Uncle Herman who lived to 106. At age 103, I asked him for any philosophical advice that I might benefit from in terms of longevity, and he said to me "I think you are more suited to the task of philosophy." The problem was, he was living experience, and I was seeking some kind of epistemological knowledge from him that he was not in possession of as far as he was concerned. Herman said, "If I don't wake up tomorrow morning, it's no big deal."

For certain kinds of people (like me, and quite possibly for you), a love of esotericism and mystery that suggest whole orders of existence below the surface appearances of nature has a tremendous intellectual appeal. Some of the most brilliant minds get sucked into believing that their heroes are more a matter of hope, than of facticity. I have heard from Clark Heinrich on FB, that Baba Hari Das, the yogi who worked around Ram Dass' Guru, Neem Karolie Baba left the presence of this great Guru because their was a certain amount of trickery and fraud employed to give the illusion of omniscience. Ken Wilber got pulled into Da Free John's trip. Ram Dass got deceived by Joya for quite a while. I saw a guy I grew up with do full-face pranams before a picture of that fat little adolescence Guru Maharaji. That kid would ride around on a sit-down lawn mower in Long Island, NY, and when approached, would ask people, "Do you know the secret of Life, Spirit, and Death?" Yes, of course, I got enlightened the same way.

Lastly, We all have hopes for messiahs, gurus, and proof of spiritual verities in physical people, places, processes, and products. A material view of the Stone as the Tibetan Wish-Fulfilling Jewel is no different. It will remain as mercurial a 'thing' as the Tibetan Jewel, and for exactly the same reasons. The alchemical Goal needs to be reinterpreted as the inner equivalent to the relief and subtle ecstasy that we would experience IF we were actually in possession of a physical Philosopher's Stone complete with all its miraculous properties. This seems the only practical path to tread.

As you yourself seem to be admitting, these are just relatively modern reinterpretations of alchemy, not really what the alchemists themselves claimed. Alchemy is obviously very much concerned with transmutation of base metals into precious ones. There is just no denying this. Same regarding medicinal and longevity claims. This was not just some "metaphysical" or "spiritual" quest, the physical and tangible goals and claims of alchemy are very clear. So like I said, alchemy lends itself to be empirically tested much more easily than plenty of other "difficult-to-believe" claims (who can, for example, empirically test "life-after-death" experiences? Here we only have what the person who was declared "clinically dead" but then came back to life supposedly witnessed during his "dead" period of time. There is nothing else to go by, so it can never be empirically tested.) So it holds a rather special position within the world of "strange" claims.

Ask a judge whether eyewitness testimony do or do not count as evidence. Plenty of people have been proven guilty or innocent because of them. Plus the analogy is not entirely good here, since the eyewitness accounts of transmutation often involved people who actually were antagonists of alchemy and did not believe in it. Since they were either telling the truth or lying about what they saw, the second choice would only make sense in the case of someone who actually believes in alchemy and has an agenda to give credit to its claims, not from someone who has no such desire. Plus in many cases the person operating the transmutation was the eyewitness himself, sometimes even by himself with no one else around, by means of a donated sample of the Stone in his possession. These cases are even more clear-cut: the eyewitness is either lying or telling the truth about what happened. There is no "middle" position here. Could they all have been lying, though? It seems a bit bold to make such a sweeping assertion. Even some chemists who did not believe in transmutation, like Bergman, had to admit that some eyewitness accounts of transmutation are not easy to be dismissed (read his "Essays, Physical and Chemical", pp. 129 to 142, where he deals with the issue of alchemical transmutation.)

III
03-25-2014, 07:40 PM
As you yourself seem to be admitting, these are just relatively modern reinterpretations of alchemy, not really what the alchemists themselves claimed. Alchemy is obviously very much concerned with transmutation of base metals into precious ones. There is just no denying this. Same regarding medicinal and longevity claims. This was not just some "metaphysical" or "spiritual" quest, the physical and tangible goals and claims of alchemy are very clear. So like I said, alchemy lends itself to be empirically tested much more easily than plenty of other "difficult-to-believe" claims (who can, for example, empirically test "life-after-death" experiences? Here we only have what the person who was declared "clinically dead" but then came back to life supposedly witnessed during his "dead" period of time. There is nothing else to go by, so it can never be empirically tested.) So it holds a rather special position within the world of "strange" claims.

Ask a judge whether eyewitness testimony do or do not count as evidence. Plenty of people have been proven guilty or innocent because of them. Plus the analogy is not entirely good here, since the eyewitness accounts of transmutation often involved people who actually were antagonists of alchemy and did not believe in it. Since they were either telling the truth or lying about what they saw, the second choice would only make sense in the case of someone who actually believes in alchemy and has an agenda to give credit to its claims, not from someone who has no such desire. Plus in many cases the person operating the transmutation was the eyewitness himself, sometimes even by himself with no one else around, by means of a donated sample of the Stone in his possession. These cases are even more clear-cut: the eyewitness is either lying or telling the truth about what happened. There is no "middle" position here. Could they all have been lying, though? It seems a bit bold to make such a sweeping assertion. Even some chemists who did not believe in transmutation, like Bergman, had to admit that some eyewitness accounts of transmutation are not easy to be dismissed (read his "Essays, Physical and Chemical", pp. 129 to 142, where he deals with the issue of alchemical transmutation.)


There is a historical record of people "witnessing" mystical things that has some real twists to it. I live in the midst of Mormons. I of course read NO MAN KNOWS MY HISTORY by Fawn Brody. It's the story of Joseph Smith. In the 1830's he had "witnesses" to the "golden plates" except that recorded in the contemporary diaries of the "witnesses" they all said that all they saw was a pile of something under a cloth, never actually seeing anything "gold" much less gold plates with language on it that he gave inspired translations to by putting two rocks in his hat.


Decades later, those who had written at the time that all they saw as a pile covered by cloths, not that they had seen the actual golden plates, now remembered seeing the golden plates. Now that was transmutation of memories, from not seeing the golden tablets in person as recorded in their contemporary diaries to seeing the golden tablets in their memories.


Then of course are the Egyptian papyri that Smith claimed were "reformed Egyptian" that was untranslatable at the time so he gave inspired translations. Now of course the real translation shows Smith's "translation" to be utter nonsense.


People in their fantasies for some reason imagine "Immortal" life in a physical sense, without death. That is quite different from "Eternal" life or maybe consciousness. Does consciousness end at physical death? With recurrence (Groundhog Day) one has eternal consciousness in a single life that goes on and on and on. Eternal consciousness appears eminently possible. Immortal life seems incredibly unlikely to be achieved and impossible to know. Even if one lives 100+ years without aging and dies the next day that is not immortal. Eternal life becomes apparent the first times one dies without loss of consciousness and enters life again.


Separating fantasy from what can actually be done is very important in this. I'll even give you a clue. "IT IS NEVER WHAT ONE THINKS OR EXPECTS"

MarkostheGnostic
03-25-2014, 08:50 PM
Far too many men have been incarcerated or executed, based on eye-witness reports. The executed were gone by the time the real criminal was discovered, and look at the news of how many men have been released from long, long incarcerations with DNA evidence finally surfacing. Eye-witness accounts of the fakir's Indian Rope Trick were documented by the British on the 19th century, and you can even see versions on YouTube today (without bloody body parts raining down). I do not believe that gravity is being transcended even though I do not know how the illusion is being performed. Stage magic, prestidigitation, is a marvel, and in less critical times, cost men their lives.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXVLqnYpT9k

This trick really evoked thoughts of magickal transmutation in my mind for a moment, but then my rational mind banished my magickal thinking because I recognized that the magickal thought was a poor quality thought deriving from a sense-dominated level of cognition which is a more primitive kind of cognition, from a Piagetian developmental perspective. Now watch how foolish I, or any of these people would feel, if they really suspended their Formal Operational Thinking for a Concrete Operational or Sensori-Motor cognition, and allowed themselves to believe that a man has actually parted glass, technically, a super-cooled liquid.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4xl4Loqu5A

I gave up a career based in empiricism a long time ago and focused on philosophical, theological, and psychological phenomena. Whereas it is true that there is experimental psychology, neuropsychology, psychopharmacology, etc., I chose the Jungian and later transpersonal schools of psychology that focus on the subjective aspect of the psyche. Here, however, I find myself playing the 'devil's advocate,' because even with my experiments in spagyrics, I cannot help but think that howsoever elaborate my production of a planetary elixir may be, and despite dreams that occur after having imbibed such a liquid that reveal imagery associated with a specific planet, chakra, stone, herb, animal, etc., the question is begged as to whether the physical liquid or plant stone really and actually serves as a matrix to hold the projections of my 'planetary' or associated chakra motives into it, and then releases those psychic effects back to my dreaming mind. I AM my chakra motives. Isolating a Saturnian spirit, is to say isolating the constellation of attributes of my Muladhara chakra. Those attributes are already a part of me, symbolized by Saturn, and so what am I doing besides a complex psychophysical meditation on that center? For planetary spirits do not exist only out there, they equally exist in the tension between my psyche and the physical materials that have come to symbolize them.

When I commence a Jupiterian elixir (I have some Sage in a stoppered bottle with an ingot of 99.9% pure Tin sitting on the cork), will the presence of the planet Jupiter in the sky better influence an actual 'binding' of Jupiterian, Svadhisthana chakra motives (as in the Kolisko Effect) in the elixir? Will imbibing this elixir do more than elicit dreams of a Jupiterian, Svadhisthana nature? I'll have to see its effect on say, my sexual response, which is one attribute of my 2nd chakra in the Hindu chakra system. If an enhancement was obtained, could one say without a controlled study that something empirical and objective has occurred? No. Placebo effect works sometimes. Hypnotic suggestion definitely works (I've been practicing hypnosis since 1989).

Krisztian
03-25-2014, 10:26 PM
. . . Here we only have what the person who was declared "clinically dead" but then came back to life supposedly witnessed during his "dead" period of time. There is nothing else to go by, so it can never be empirically tested.) So it holds a rather special position within the world of "strange" claims. . . .

Psychiatrist Ian Stevenson has documented many cases, conducted rather clever empirical studies into this particular subject area.

But I don't want to get into long arguments for it or against, just simply mentioning it.

Axismundi000
03-26-2014, 09:41 AM
Thanks for the kind words. Most visitors to our home completely ignore our books. We are living in a very anti-intellectual place, Miami, and our respective karmic predicaments that took us here, individually, are lengthy stories. But whenever I encounter someone on line who appreciates books, I want to invite them over, even virtually. I would like nothing better than to visit people who also have libraries that they allow me to browse in. My 2nd analyst had an outstanding library, which I endeavored to match, and I have in the past 23 years since he died.

"Jealous," or 'envy' is a figure of speech, I know, but after immolating my original occult library in 1977 during my seminary stay (with Wizard® brand barbecue lighter fluid), I eventually rebuilt my occult library. During some 8 years of Jungian analysis with 3 Zurich-trained analysts, I also accrued a number of alchemy books. A few years ago I began to practice spagyrics after having read Mark Stavish's book, closely followed by Manfred Junius', Frater Albertus', and Robert Allen Bartlett's books. And yes, ALCHEMY has been my Florida license plate for over 20 years, but only 2 people have ever asked me about it, and one semi-literate and possibly home-sick farm girl in a pickup truck once tooted me at a red light while at a stop light, shouting, "ALLEGANY County?" The top was down on my Miata, and I heard her, but I didn't want to embarrass her for her projection, or lack of spelling skills. :p

http://i61.tinypic.com/w0i83p.jpg

http://i60.tinypic.com/288pahi.jpg

http://i57.tinypic.com/2uyg8b6.jpg

My wife is also an avid reader, although she prefers the simplicity of Taosim, and understands the meaning of Tao, as The Way, to be identical to the original name for Christianity. When we decided to live together before marrying, I built her a library in our hallway, so we're both bibliophiles who are running out of space for books but I for one have enough books that I have not finished or begun yet. With my recent forced retirement and an income slashed by 2/3, my purchasing of books has slowed way, way down.

http://i57.tinypic.com/282ov8z.jpg

Me and my wife have about half of the titles we could see on your bookshelf. Would you like to post a list of your collection so I can sift through and check on-line for stuff I might want to get? A nice book collection like that needs to be catalogued anyway:)

JDP
03-26-2014, 02:53 PM
There is a historical record of people "witnessing" mystical things that has some real twists to it. I live in the midst of Mormons. I of course read NO MAN KNOWS MY HISTORY by Fawn Brody. It's the story of Joseph Smith. In the 1830's he had "witnesses" to the "golden plates" except that recorded in the contemporary diaries of the "witnesses" they all said that all they saw was a pile of something under a cloth, never actually seeing anything "gold" much less gold plates with language on it that he gave inspired translations to by putting two rocks in his hat.


Decades later, those who had written at the time that all they saw as a pile covered by cloths, not that they had seen the actual golden plates, now remembered seeing the golden plates. Now that was transmutation of memories, from not seeing the golden tablets in person as recorded in their contemporary diaries to seeing the golden tablets in their memories.


Then of course are the Egyptian papyri that Smith claimed were "reformed Egyptian" that was untranslatable at the time so he gave inspired translations. Now of course the real translation shows Smith's "translation" to be utter nonsense.


People in their fantasies for some reason imagine "Immortal" life in a physical sense, without death. That is quite different from "Eternal" life or maybe consciousness. Does consciousness end at physical death? With recurrence (Groundhog Day) one has eternal consciousness in a single life that goes on and on and on. Eternal consciousness appears eminently possible. Immortal life seems incredibly unlikely to be achieved and impossible to know. Even if one lives 100+ years without aging and dies the next day that is not immortal. Eternal life becomes apparent the first times one dies without loss of consciousness and enters life again.


Separating fantasy from what can actually be done is very important in this. I'll even give you a clue. "IT IS NEVER WHAT ONE THINKS OR EXPECTS"

Yes, but those eyewitnesses were people who believed in such mystical things, so as eyewitnesses their accounts must be taken with a great degree of caution. There could very well be an ulterior motive in what they claim they witnessed. The eyewitnesses of alchemical transmutations, on the other hand, are of a more varied sort. They even include people who publicly expressed their skepticism about the whole thing and who later became convinced of the claims of alchemy after ocular demonstrations.

JDP
03-26-2014, 03:01 PM
Psychiatrist Ian Stevenson has documented many cases, conducted rather clever empirical studies into this particular subject area.

But I don't want to get into long arguments for it or against, just simply mentioning it.

I know of such attempts to test these claims, even books have been published about it:

http://www.amazon.com/There-After-Examination-Empirical-Evidence/dp/0786421169

But so far nobody has afforded irrefutable proof of them.

MarkostheGnostic
03-26-2014, 04:53 PM
The workings of my camera remain a mystery. Sometimes an icon appears when I post pics, where clicking it zooms in and the titles would be legible, but not on this site. The alchemy books alone are fairly numerous, and there are more up top, but 'my' selections should not be a guideline for your choice. There are lots of picture books, and histories, and there are 'how to' books by modern authors, mostly spagyrics, but Robert Allen Bartlett goes into mineral alchemy, (I will probably remain with the 'Wet Way' as I am born under the sign of Cancer. Plus, I'd never imbibe mineral 'medicines'). What are you looking for? I'm a bibliophile but "Painted cakes do not satisfy hunger" - BE HERE NOW.

horticult
03-26-2014, 05:08 PM
burn your bux

DonSweet
03-26-2014, 06:36 PM
Markos ...

In response to your post beginning, "I am really not interested in debating the development of chemistry here," you bring up several intriguing points, the quoted one being the most relevant for remaining on track with this thread's theme, "Aspects of Alchemy."

One key point you made, which I will rephrase, is the personification of both physical and non-physical knowledge and the failure of that system. A "priest" and even a Master cannot know everything ... neither can an author ... or even a group of authors. All any of those "personas" can do is point the way, not define it.

But I would suggest that our "inner compass" is far more effective.

Western culture is fixated (and not apparently so, but factually so) on the discovery of things outside one's self through others, and almost exclusively so. There is only the slightest twinge of, "see for yourself." In fact, in instance after instance, the status quo is loathed to accept personal introspection or the acquisition of insight or knowledge that doesn't suit that status quo.

It is not difficult to observe that this "mandated adhesion" to an establishment stems from a long religious history of repression for the sake of control. If one were to express this thematically, it would be that cultures and religions outside the Western cultures (and I will include Middle Eastern as a fringe) do not embrace the concept of, "Come see what I have to share," but in fact states clearly, "Come learn this or I will destroy you." In fact, that theme is, "You know nothing outside of what I know, therefore you must immediately and utterly subordinate yourself to me and my system."

Without getting into the available factual connections, which would take hours, all this stems from the Roman Empire (and the conquering empires that came before it). Now, you could mix in the imperial systems of the East, but only in a cursory fashion observing those structures as aspects of an outer [often mercurial and temporary] facade. The majority of cultures outside European/Western culture, particularly of the modern age post-Christ-and-post-Roman-Empire, encourage, foster and nurture personal growth at the grassroots level.

I should clarify based on that sentence that it is not Christ's influence on the discouragement of personal development, but influence of Christian dogma's influence, which can be properly defined as a mandate. The same can be said for Islam as both are offshoots of the same root source.

Now, how all this ties into your books and your practice of Alchemy can be seen as a metaphor for the full-circle recovery of Western Culture.

Submission under the threat of the sword and the crucifixion for the last several thousand years (the last two being the most critical) has been a literal disease intentionally impairing personal development and evolution. Such a system cannot tolerate anything less than utter submission.

Naturally, this can be easily perceived as utterly barbaric, reminiscent of cave men and clubs, since the entire system relies exclusively on force, not reason. Any so-called personal development acquired in this system was channeled "for the good of the state" and not the individuated benefit of the participant. Participation wasn't voluntary and communally benevolent, but forcefully extracted "labor" for the collective good.

"Learn from this book and you will be a productive citizen rewarded for your efforts."

But one cannot avoid the antithesis of the statement since there is not only a clear underlying implication, but a historical record to remind you.

"Reject this book, and you will be destroyed."

The "book" is any dogmatic assertion. Dogmatic assertions are narrow, confining, limited and are indeed, by their very nature a quintessential representation of literal ignorance.

Again, easily observed, the very Universe we live in is not comprised of ignorance, but Knowledge ... and all of it.

Dogmatic assertions are the same thing as insisting that all you need to know, all that is knowable, is on one shelf in one aisle of a library, when, in fact, all that is knowable isn't even housed in the library.

Cultures outside that of Western/European cultures know this, even under any "peripheral" assertions of passing, temporary imperial structures, should they even exist in those cultures.

In aboriginal Australian culture, they do not. In Native American culture, they do not. In pre-Christian-pre-Roman earth-based European cultures, they did not. In Eastern culture, imperial structures were literally peripheral (although not incidental) to the underlying principles of personal development and introspection.

Your library and your personally experienced path -- if I may be so bold as to suggest it -- is a reflection of this return to the seeking of all knowledge, not just an aspect of it.

If I'm reading your story correctly, you rejected the true authority of "all knowledge," and attempted to accept the truly false authority of limited knowledge ...

... at which point you observed that, "There is something very wrong here," and returned to a path that was truly one that sought Enlightenment.

If that's not a Quintessential Definition of Alchemy, there is none.

Alchemy does not exist in one book, but all books, and is in fact a path to seeking that which can only be defined as Universal Perfection.

A flask is merely a tool used along the path, not the path (or destination) itself.

Andro
03-26-2014, 08:52 PM
This is actually turning into a very interesting thread, IMO. Quite eye-opening to see the variety & diversity of aspects and perspectives when it comes to how different people perceive Alchemy. I find it inspiring and the more I read, the more I'm actually having a hard time seeing contradictions between the various aspects presented here... They all look more complementary than contradictory to me, as no one person holds 'all' the keys. Once the perspective changes from one of 'right vs. wrong dispute' to one of 'cross-pollination', it's a different picture altogether.

I remember one of Solomon Levi's thoughts about being ALL-inclusive, and how being All-inclusive, also by definition includes excluding something. Seemingly a Paradox, but isn't everything?

MarkostheGnostic
03-26-2014, 09:26 PM
DonSweet:

This is an accurate mirroring of my path, although, when I dropped pre-medical studies to become a philosophy major, I was the figure being blasted out of The Tower in the Tarot deck. My world was being pulled out from beneath my feet, my first short-lived girlfriend, who went to college to obtain a physician, and my poor stereotypical Jewish parents all mirrored with their shock, the shock that I was experiencing when a lifetime of cultural programming and apparent self-generated motivation was struck by proverbial lightning ->


Your library and your personally experienced path -- if I may be so bold as to suggest it -- is a reflection of this return to the seeking of all knowledge, not just an aspect of it.
If I'm reading your story correctly, you rejected the true authority of "all knowledge," and attempted to accept the truly false authority of limited knowledge ...
... at which point you observed that, "There is something very wrong here," and returned to a path that was truly one that sought Enlightenment.
Firstly, I hope I did not give the wrong impression that alchemical initiatory knowledge has anything to do with the accumulation of books. I read 'about' alchemy (among other related interests) because I am an intellectual and a bibliophile, and frankly, with besides home care, and personal hygiene practices (exercise, meditation, the usual), all my time is now free time, since forced retirement in June 2013. Even while I was employed, for 27 years I only worked 212 days of the year and had a lot more free time than most. I sometimes tell my Soror Mystica that it seems pointless to continue reading since I do not have an eidetic memory, and when I pick off a shelf copiously underlined books with margin notes, it's often like someone else had read that book, since I have to look at those pages to remind myself that I did in fact read and comment. I hope all the minutiae has in some sense been digested and assimilated and has somehow contributed to my personality development, because all that I've read lies not in easily retrievable layers of memory. I have an excellent memory back to the first 18 months of life, including nightmares (not counting a revivification of my birth experience on 7/4/73, on a high dose of LSD-25), and I take nootropic supplements, so pre-senile dementia isn't the problem.

I have rejected ALL dogmas, and pretty much all theology that doesn't simply teach a technique for self-inquiry, like Hesychastic prayer in The Philokalia. I've read what Augustine in the West and Pseudo-Dionysus in the East has written about a Holy Trinity. I enjoyed John MacQuarrie's Christian Existential approach to the Trinity as well, only because it permitted me to explain to my Soror's late father (a Nigerian Muslim) that the Christian doctrine of the Trinity was not intended to be polytheistic. He said it was the best description he'd been given. Nevertheless, the ONLY Cataphatic mystical statement I am willing to entertain is 1 John 4:8, "God is agapé," and only because it is, like Karuna in Buddhism, a singular psychological motive that I can enthrone within, act through and aspire to perfect. It is therefore of transcendental of utility, not speculation.

On Gnostic groups that I belong to, the spirit of 'live and let live' prevails. When I was the advisee of, and research assistant to the then, only Jungian analyst in Maryland, I also learned this spirit of ecumenism when it came to the inner life. I'll take an esoteric in any faith over an exoteric fundamentalist in the faiths I am karmically defined by. I heard a rabbi at a bar mitzvah make fun of "navel gazing," 5 years ago, and I heard the exact same comment from a professor of ethics at the Methodist seminary of Drew University in 1977, where "navel gazing" is a derogatory expression for systematic introversion. These men had status in their respective worlds, yet they were virtual mummies as far as I was concerned in their inner lives, and not worthy of being any aspirant's guide for anything significant.

Thank you for your thoughtful response. Cheers!

DonSweet
03-27-2014, 04:04 AM
Androgynus ...

For paradox ...

Socrates:

"As for me, all I know is that I know nothing."

Lo!
03-27-2014, 05:06 AM
Hmm.. I haven't been lurking on this forum for VERY long, but longer than some... I'd like to gently point out to the newer folks that I've had the great pleasure of reading some great arguments in different threads that never got to the point of childish insults or instigating anger for the sake of vindication or ego. It's been nice... It's what makes this place different. For personal attacks and temper tantrums there's always the paranormal section of 4chan...

This may be an unwelcome rabbit trail, but has anyone been watching Cosmos? Degrasse points out that Issac newton's studies in alchemy and geomatria never amounted to anything, as though his intellectual and philosophical reputation was salvaged by his work and calculations on orbits and momentum. Is there any credible link that we know of between newton's work in alchemy and its effects on his worldview and mathematical imagination?

Dragonsblood
03-27-2014, 06:58 AM
Is there any credible link that we know of between newton's work in alchemy and it's effects on his worldview and mathematical imagination? at the risk of going off topic..

Having been fortunate to see some of his notes and the "feel" of them, personally have the intuition that Newton's alchemical pursuits were his true goal and his exoteric scientific output were byproducts of the same, also suspect he achieved more with regards alchemy than is commonly reported. Often, without the initiation afforded by alchemy an individual's impact is relatively low and impact wise Newton is right up there. Evidenced by perhaps the dubious honor of making the list of Grand Masters of the Priory of Sion, where Newton is included alongside Flamel, Da Vinci, Fludd and Boyle - which would be unsual had he not been successful in concocting something at least the equal of the others listed.

But there are others here who seem to have inside knowledge regarding who truly succeeded, so this is just speculation on my part.

DonSweet
03-27-2014, 07:00 AM
-- After purchasing and studying Newton's alchemical works in 1942, economist John Maynard Keynes, for example, opined that "Newton was not the first of the age of reason, he was the last of the magicians."

-- Much of Newton's writing on alchemy may have been lost in a fire in his laboratory, so the true extent of his work in this area may have been larger than is currently known.

-- Due to the threat of punishment and the potential scrutiny he feared from his peers within the scientific community, Newton may have deliberately left his work on alchemical subjects unpublished.

-- Found within The Chronology of Ancient Kingdoms, are several passages that directly mention the mythical land of Atlantis ... Within the same material Newton mentions that according to ancient sources, Atlantis had been as big as all Europe, Africa and Asia, but was sunk into the Sea.

-- ... the Rosicrucian movement still would have a profound influence upon Newton, particularly in regard to his alchemical work and philosophical thought ... The Rosicrucian belief in being specially chosen for the ability to communicate with angels or spirits is echoed in Newton's prophetic beliefs.

-- Though it is not known for sure if Isaac Newton was in fact a Rosicrucian, and he never publicly identified himself as one, from his writings it does appear that he may have shared many of their sentiments and beliefs.

"Never amounted to anything" is a matter of interpretation.

I interpret differently.

History is written by the victors. Until recently, strict empiricists ruled ... and strict in the harshest sense of the word. We have seen such behavior (or at least attitude) here.

Sir Newton was clearly a seeker of truth, and not "interpreted" truth, not limited truth, not dogmatic truth, but that which actually is.

The man did not mingle the esoteric with the five-senses interpretation of the Universe for nothing. He particularly couldn't have done it for decades in tens of thousands of words for nothing. He may have abandoned such idealistic pursuits later in life, but it's my conclusion that it wasn't abandonment for lack of belief or even knowledge ... but more in the sense of exhaustion ... that, and no one can really know the man's heart ... not even the historical record, particularly a historical record ruled by immutable fanatical dogma. Anyone who has the privilege of living past fifty knows of what I speak. One gets tired of the constant barrage of ignorance and denial.

He was, after all, only human.

It's a shame, sad and even a little barbaric that any of this even comes into question. There is more to life than "see, feel, hear, touch and smell." That great men of great vision would not embrace this is absurdity in its purest form. That great Alchemists would dismiss anything past the five senses is worse than absurd, it is ludicrous ... literally insane.

For my participation in this forum from this point forward, any of you who persist in the assertion of five-senses empirical alchemy (note the lack of capital), you will be utterly ignored. Anything I need to know from you can be found in a chemistry book.

I have no more time for you.

Seek joy.

That is the only true Gold.

MarkostheGnostic
03-27-2014, 07:31 AM
Sir Newton was clearly a seeker of truth, and not "interpreted" truth, not limited truth, not dogmatic truth, but that which actually is.

The man did not mingle the esoteric with the five-senses interpretation of the Universe for nothing. He particularly couldn't have done it for decades in tens of thousands of words for nothing. He may have abandoned such idealistic pursuits later in life, but it's my conclusion that it wasn't abandonment for lack of belief or even knowledge ... but more in the sense of exhaustion ... that, and no one can really know the man's heart ... not even the historical record, particularly a historical record ruled by immutable fanatical dogma. Anyone who has the privilege of living past fifty knows of what I speak. One gets tired of the constant barrage of ignorance and denial.

He was, after all, only human.

It's a shame, sad and even a little barbaric that any of this even comes into question. There is more to life than "see, feel, hear, touch and smell." That great men of great vision would not embrace this is absurdity in its purest form. That great Alchemists would dismiss anything past the five senses is worse than absurd, it is ludicrous ... literally insane.

For my participation in this forum from this point forward, any of you who persist in the assertion of five-senses empirical alchemy (note the lack of capital), you will be utterly ignored. Anything I need to know from you can be found in a chemistry book.

I have no more time for you.

Seek joy.

That is the only true Gold.

RIGHT ON! I recently read The Foundations of Newton's Alchemy by B.J.T. Dobbs, (you'd be interested if you haven't read it, and you're interested in Newton's alchemical pursuits). I have, but have yet to read Isaac Newton: The Last Sorcerer. I'm writing this at 3:27 am est because I've gotten into the questionably healthy habit of staying up and reading to the wee hours since retiring last June. A friend just left us after an evening of music and libation, and among the books piled up around me, I am enjoying The Philosopher's Stone: A Quest for the Secret of Alchemy by Peter Marshall. It is an autobiographical account of Peter's quest around the planet to find out what he could in different lands, and seems legitimate. It is a fun read.

Peace,
MtG

Krisztian
03-27-2014, 01:52 PM
. . . . Is there any credible link that we know of between newton's work in alchemy and its effects on his worldview and mathematical imagination?

Principe in The Secret of Alchemy, describes Newton as an alchemist, documentation found that he was experimenting with writings of Philalethes (among others).

I suspect like with the writings of Darwin, mainstream picked out certain aspects of Newton's work, left out those that doesn't fit for their empirical worldview. How many know that Darwin actually wrote about love and maintained that it's the most essential thing for evolution?

MarkostheGnostic
03-27-2014, 04:54 PM
Principe in The Secret of Alchemy, describes Newton as an alchemist, documentation found that he was experimenting with writings of Philalethes (among others).

I suspect like with the writings of Darwin, mainstream picked out certain aspects of Newton's work, left out those that doesn't fit for their empirical worldview. How many know that Darwin actually wrote about love and maintained that it's the most essential thing for evolution?
I never heard that about Darwin, but I have read that the British Royal Society has Newton's alchemical writings archived, even though there is the story of a fire having destroyed them. Moreover, the Society has refused to release copies to the public, either because there is something there that is too threatening to present day models, or because the writings are considered to be an embarrassment and is considered to taint the name of Sir Isaac Newton and the decision to Knight the man. Look at the FB articles that claim that cannabis oil kills cancers, and how the government opposes its general use because 'Big Pharma' makes hundreds of billions on the ineffective and even deadly chemotherapy drugs. They can't patent a plant oil that might actually save millions of lives so they restrict it's use and do not release clinical findings.

Who knows how much the governments hide? I saw my first UFO over Miami in January 2014, an orange triangle that moved silently from North to South. The same thing was seen in November 2013 and photographed by people. It's on Google. Then, there was a video of 'something' (a different shaped object) docked at the International Space Station. UFOs, crop circles, Red Mercury, Roswell, the list of mysteries occulted by governments is long. The Chinese government didn't officially release to its people that the USA had landed on the Moon until 1979 - ten years after the fact - according to a former professor of mine to went to China that year and had just returned to the USA.

Krisztian
03-27-2014, 05:32 PM
. . . . the Society has refused to release copies to the public, either because there is something there that is too threatening to present day models, or because the writings are considered to be an embarrassment and is considered to taint the name of Sir Isaac Newton and the decision to Knight the man. . . .

It was in his later writings. Apparently, Darwin changed his views on evolution towards the later years of his life. I only know because I knew during my Academia years a professor from Stanford who shared similar interests as I. So we often conversed. Otherwise, I wouldn't have known either. The "theory of evolution" actually played a much lesser role in his writings as it is portrayed in modern intellectual circles.

It is what it is.

III
03-27-2014, 10:08 PM
Someone who is going to be a successful Alchemist has to be able to distinguish the possible from the imaginary. Based on my own experiences and those observed in others there are stages that each one goes through. There is to start with the person as a seeker of a teaching or teacher or methods or something. There are books written about this step and how to come up with the teacher one deserves. An old saying is "A fool gets a Fool for a teacher" (the way of the fool is a valid way). Finding a teacher, or maybe the correct teacher for one's self is important. I have helped a number of persons who are just looking for a hint, but they have to find me. I have spent 15,000 hours or more teaching and practicing with my current partner and more than 1000 hours each with half a dozen others.


As an illustration, my partner has gone through several stages with me. She started out a student and guided to me. I knew she was coming. She graduated from student. This is important. If a person isn't progressing, isn't learning and becoming competent in Alchemy (of whatever form) something is wrong. After that she became my apprentice, again more learning but at a higher level. After achieving initiation at that level she became my partner.


Now we each together and separately receive invitations to do alchemical work with people, sometimes once for a few hours, sometimes periodically over years. There is one woman here with whom I get together once or twice every few years and we share what we have learned in the intervening time. There are people who show up "coincidently" for a single interaction, sometimes having traveled from half a world away.


Getting back to stages, neither of us is "seeking" either a method or a teacher. While open to adding to our knowledge, the whole basis isn't going to get upset and start over with something different. We are both making continuous and regular growth and evolutionary changes. I know of no way at all to stop the process even if we wanted to. So typically at this point the people who desire to interact with us are at our approximate level of knowledge and ability. We are performing and doing what we spent years learning.


Taking on a serious student is not a trivial obligation. There are lots of potential mishaps along the way. However, if they are not learning or progressing at a reasonable rate, something is wrong. Usually a mismatch will show up early in the student part of things. The person won't be able to progress beyond a certain point. They will hit something they can't or won't get past. No specific reasons are to be inferred. Matching up a student with a teacher isn't easy. I avoid those in whom I can see problems that I can't work with. Teaching the impossible is hard enough without additional problems. I don't know how others judge these things. I go by my own experiences. I teach what I know, not somebody elses theory and practice that I have never been able to verify myself.


I use quite a variety of books for people to read but teach what I know; spoken, unspoken and unspeakable.

Jerry
03-27-2014, 10:33 PM
Personal/flaming parts removed.
________________________

There is a physical Philosopher’s Stone. You just don’t know what it is because you keep missing the subtle hints. You keep relying on some Jungian interpretation which is in error. If Jung wasn’t in error, then those other books would have to be misinterpretations. If the books are valid, they don’t agree with Jung’s interpretation. I’ll make it simple for you. You and your books are both wrong, along with your ‘only practical path’.

Are there some miraculous properties to the Philosopher’s Stone? I guess we will find out (when you wish upon a star). First, you have to find the star or the moon that looks like a star.

Again, there is an actual Philosopher’s Stone. That’s the point you keep missing. It isn’t some delusional fantasy substance. The problem is how you define it. Is it the cause or the effect, or the effect is the cause of another effect, or is it an objective? Is it something you have to make? That would explain some of the chymical recipes. Does it have some chemical effects? That would explain the numerous particulars. This is not to be confused with the Angelical Stone of which both are intertwined in the older literature.

MarkostheGnostic
03-28-2014, 12:50 AM
It is what it is.

And it is interesting! :)

lwowl
03-28-2014, 02:06 AM
Food for Thoth


None of your sad little attempts at one-up-man-ship are worth responding to. Your name-calling is puerile, your character undeveloped, your manners non-existent, your attitude hostile, and your understanding nil. You do not debate, you insult and argue. I have nothing further to to say to you. Any persistence on your part would be regarded as a case of athlete's foot, nothing serious but annoying, but fortunately, I can dump you in my ignore list. Hopefully, the moderator[s] will consider your ad hominems grounds for a ban, before you inflict more toxicity on other members of this forum.



Again, there is an actual Philosopher’s Stone. That’s the point you keep missing. It isn’t some delusional fantasy substance. The problem is how you define it. Is it the cause or the effect, or the effect is the cause of another effect, or is it an objective? Is it something you have to make? That would explain some of the chymical recipes. Does it have some chemical effects? That would explain the numerous particulars. This is not to be confused with the Angelical Stone of which both are intertwined in the older literature.

Dude, don’t take all these posts too seriously unless you want to.. I was just playing with the marbles in your head.

This thread is Aspects of Alchemy. There's a lot vitriol in the two quotes above. Alchemy has a tradition of heated debate. The flame only works if it is alchemically applied. Part of the work in the lab is to remove the dross. Sometimes that means flames. Other times it means ice. The Subject is Alchemy.

To ignore the fire or the ice is not useful in the Great Work. Getting personal leads to war and death with beautiful condemnations.

That being said there is more Alchemy in that top paragraph from Jerry than meets the eye.

It could be said that alchemy is a game of marbles. I loved playing marbles when I was a kid: the whole world goes on in that circle; pilgrims enter the game with great expectations and trepidations.:)

lwowl
03-30-2014, 05:17 PM
Ban related content removed.

Please see Re: Banned members (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?3570-Re-Banned-members) and also AF Policy Reminders & Updates (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?3966-AF-Policy-Reminders-amp-Updates).
_____________________________

This will be my last post at this forum.

Andro
03-30-2014, 06:36 PM
Reply to ban related post removed. Please see Re: Banned members (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?3570-Re-Banned-members).

The rest of this thread has also been cleaned of personal/group insults, flaming, trolling, off-topics and administrative-related posts.

Krisztian
03-30-2014, 07:53 PM
The best measurement I can find to hold close in our hearts is expressed well in the following statement by Russ House,


The [Great] Work is not about the building of our ego.

Eshai
05-16-2014, 03:47 PM
Chemistry … a non-esoteric offshoot of Alchemy … is a limited sized vessel with a self-defined termination.

I personally do not view chemistry in such a way. Chemistry is merely the application of methods which have been observed to yield predictable results. An ethical foundation of chemistry, and of science in its entirety, is not to make judgements which cannot be verified. This foundational principal, by default, eliminates spiritualism (or anything which cannot be logically deduced--for when we can verify "spiritual" things they will no longer be called spiritual). This does limit what people can say they know for certain, but this does not mean that the application of chemistry or science is inherently limited; it does not mean that chemistry has a self-defined termination point. Chemistry and science ends only where human understanding ends.

It is the design of science to take nothing for granted, and mark no great leaps of imagination as empirical fact, or else it is no longer science. If it did such things, it would be religion, and religion has shown very little contribution in the way of technological progress and advancement of knowledge (other than in the arena of inspiration, which is often a precursor to discovery--but such discovery is still always verifiable and tangible, much to the chagrin of religious zealots and leaders, the Guardians of Orthodoxy, who would prefer such knowledge remain hidden so that they may keep their faith-based seats of power).

From a certain point of view, alchemy is limiting because it allows for leaps of faith and deeply profound psychological truths to govern the understanding of the physical world. There is nothing wrong with this if it works for you, and perfectly applicable as long as you do not aspire that those "truths" become relevant for anyone other than yourself. For that is the opposite of empiricism and the cornerstone of religion.

When I first came to this site, my belief was that alchemy and chemistry were no different, except in historical context. It is commonly believed, and taught (such as in "The Golden Book of Chemistry Experiments", a book recently mentioned on this forum), that alchemists were the forebears of chemists. Eventually, I came to see it differently: alchemists were using scientific methods (the methods that work in the physical world) to get what they were after. Immortality and vast wealth (or limitless resources), and it is no coincidence that both of these things are promised by virtually every religion on the planet... but only after we die, conveniently.

DonSweet
05-25-2014, 07:34 AM
Eshai ...

A thoughtful response and also one I'd hoped this thread would generate.

Having started my adventures with flask and beaker at the age of fourteen, I both understand and largely agree with your observations. But I also get the idea that you're eluding to something underlying your words ... that some element of non-empirical "science" still influences science ... e.g. your reference to inspiration and your point about, "... does not mean that chemistry has a self-defined termination point."

I believe my conclusions (also not to imply a termination) may reach the same point, but from the [perhaps] opposite direction. I do not start with a catalog of "knowns" and make forays into the unknown, as with a hypothesis. I start with the unknowns and explore the possibilities.

You've also implied a stark separation from "religion" and science. I completely understand this, and even the necessity for it. Without "proof" and the empirical process to establish it, it cannot be fact in the physical realm. Religion, as it is popularly practiced, can only ever be belief, not fact, as its theories are interminably debatable.

Although we agree on religion, there's one aspect with which I'll simply openly disagree. Yes, there were Alchemists that sought power and wealth through Alchemy, particularly in a specific period in Europe. I don't know, but perhaps one point you may be missing is that a "true" Alchemist ... long-term historical Alchemy stretching back thousands of years ... the Alchemist that seeks to be a healer (of one's self as well as others), who is not on a quest to gain wealth or power, but simply knowledge ... considers the Alchemists you describe that do seek wealth and power as merely "Puffers," not true Alchemists. In particular, these Puffers in no way represent the origins or intent of Alchemy in the slightest ... going back six to eight or more thousand years.

I'll be happy to be corrected if wrong, but in my studies of Alchemy, I have learned that these Puffers were the precursors to modern chemistry and pharmacology. The splinter away from "original" Alchemy and its millenas-long history of healing and benevolence occurred as the result of charlatans attempting to use Alchemical processes for personal gain. These Puffers and their practices evolved into modern chemistry, void of the esoteric elements so long employed in the Practice. It's even cited that Isaac Newton is a key founder of modern physics and mathematics, ignoring his esoteric Alchemical pursuits, implying he was a pure Empiricist. He wasn't. Neither was Carl Jung, considered to be one of the founders of modern psychology.

Even though they were discredited and even executed in droves, the Puffers won. They found ways to produce wealth and power from their narrow perceptions of Alchemical processes, intentionally and falsely discrediting the original practice of Alchemy.

Further, to be clear, one thing I will not do is enter a discussion of "religion." I have no religious interests. None. What I have is esoteric, non-physical and spiritual interests. Religion doesn't enter into it in any way, shape or form. I even resist the use of the word "spiritualist" since it implies ritualistic dogma.

Non-physical, spiritual and esoteric elements of existence are merely largely unexplored facts of existence. "Love," for example, exists, therefore it is as much of an element of existence as sulfur or mercury or potassium.

This is where the question arises ... If I distill water and put my heart, soul and love into the process, is there a difference to the product if I am merely mundane and perfunctory about it? Even empirical science is beginning to admit there is. This is not "religion." Again, I have no religious or dogmatic connection or aspiration. "Feeling" alone, for example, is being empirically proven to affect results in a slew of scientific disciplines, particularly health, which intimately involve the disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics.

So ... I won't (and in fact, can't) enter into a conversation that even eludes to religion since it has nothing to do with my non-empirical aspects and approaches to Alchemy.

If I have an altar integrated into my lab (which I do), it has NO religious connotations whatsoever. The items in it are merely representations of the historical aspects of Alchemy and the principles on which it is based ... merely reminders of my pursuits. They are items that keep my mind (and yes, spirit) focused on the tasks at hand and the desired results ... as well as the acceptance of the failures ... as well as the potential my Alchemical pursuits may bring.

As for your observation that chemistry and Alchemy are most certainly different, I can't agree more. However, your reasons for that difference, I couldn't disagree more, largely over the fact that history has proven the birth of chemistry to be a devolution away from useful, helpful practices thousands of years old, to a self-defeating limitation that is completing a circle back to those originally established thousands-year-old principles.

We ... as both physical and non-physical beings actually have an influence on the outcome of the reactions and processes that take place in the physical realm.

This is current, emerging, contemporary, empirical science.

Eshai
05-25-2014, 08:50 PM
I have very little knowledge of the history of alchemy, so I do not plan on refuting what you say about the break between puffers and true alchemists. And I also understand how you don't care to enter into a religious discussion. I don't blame you at all.


If I distill water and put my heart, soul and love into the process, is there a difference to the product if I am merely mundane and perfunctory about it? Even empirical science is beginning to admit there is.
A curious thing. May I ask who is admitting this? I would wager that a blind test would readily disprove this... minus the psychological effects that might result (one example being that a person who puts his heart into something might happen to do a better job... for instance, taking care to make extra sure his equipment is sterilized before beginning, or something like that).

I view chemistry in this manner: it is something people use, therefore it has no inherent goals or objectives anymore than a table has inherent goals or objectives. It falls upon the people who use it to define their own goals. In such, a "true alchemist" is one who is genuinely sincere and selfless in his aims, while a "puffer" is selfish and is insincere in order to obtain those selfish desires. But both still use chemistry in their work (both make use of the table), though their goals is what differentiates the alchemists from the puffers.

I will however say that at this time, I do not yet understand alchemy as many understand it. Of course, that is part of why I am here talking about it.

DonSweet
05-26-2014, 05:40 AM
The recent DNA studies are among my favorite aspect of this ...

http://www.heartmath.org/templates/ihm/e-newsletter/publication/2012/winter/emotions-can-change-your-dna.php

http://guardianlv.com/2013/07/dna-affected-by-love-praise-and-gratitude/

Next ... links to heart health are fairly well established ...



[URL=http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/features/positive-emotions-health-kubzansky-html/ (http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/Encyclopedia/Content.aspx?ContentTypeID=134&ContentID=165[/URL)

[URL=http://womeninbalance.org/2014/03/03/happy-heart-healthy-heart-the-link-between-emotions-and-cardiovascular-disease/[/URL]

This was only about six minutes of Googling, if that. Point being, science (per se) is making admissions of connections to "wavelengths" of emotion and altered biomass and even effects on physics.

It may be difficult for us to continue this conversation with much of a fruitful outcome for the time-being from our two perspectives, although I do not discourage discussion. Mainly, you lack (merely as fact, not as a slight) two key references that I possess. One is at least a basic understanding of Alchemy prior to the simple-minded pop-culture notions that grew out of the Dark Ages and Medieval period, which in no way accurately represents the world-wide practice of Alchemy spanning continents, multiple cultures and millennia. In Europe, sans the shenanigans of the Puffers, perhaps the Renaissance Alchemists best represent these principles and practices, although the terrorist-like repression of Christian dominance severely limited and distorted any open practice of True Alchemy. This highly repressive circumstance gave rise to the many cryptic and cypher-like symbolisms so famously (and inaccurately) linked to original Alchemy. In other words, I see either Medieval or even Renaissance Alchemy as a poor representations of Alchemy proper.

Second, as an [apparently] empirical scientist, who has expressed little spiritual understanding, it contrasts my (not to brag, but again, simply stating fact) lifelong spiritual path, particularly twenty-seven years deeply and intimately involved in Native American philosophy and spirituality ... a philosophy and spirituality stretching back nearly twenty thousand years. In western Pennsylvania alone (much less many older sites) there are remains of sacred ceremonial sites dating back fourteen thousand years. I have been among their descendants learning their ways for nearly three decades. And no, Native Americans do not "practice a religion," but have certain spiritual philosophies utterly foreign to Western thinking.

I may also suggest that we may have another contrasting perspective in that it is not difficult to assume that you feel things that are newer historically are better, merely based on the simple theory of the evolution of knowledge. I do not hold fast to this theory, and in fact often dispute it. Much Human knowledge ... hard acquired over many hundreds even thousands of years ... has been lost in history's great tragedies, such as the burning of the Library of Alexandria, as well as to normal decay and neglect. But also, this religious dogma and fanaticism we have both agreed not to discuss has destroyed more valuable acquired knowledge than can be counted. Therefore, I cannot take the perspective that what we know now is all or the best of what has been known.

As for your citation that chemistry is a tool, I whole-heartedly agree. However, there is also the citation of point-of-reference.

As I've stated in previous posts (in other words), rather than viewing chemistry as a be-all-and-end-all physical reality of physical processes, I view chemistry as a representation of esoteric non-physical processes and these observable processes and reactions are "portrayals" of those things that are not observable through the five senses. In other words, my reference is that non-physical is the reality and what we as limited physical beings call physical reality is merely a paradigm.

If you hadn't guessed by this point, I am aware of senses beyond the five commonly recognized physical senses, and not as assumptions or conjecture, but as fact.

Eshai
05-27-2014, 12:34 PM
Please don't make assumptions, Don. Just because I value objectivity doesn't mean I do not value the philosophical, the intangible, the psychological and the spiritual. Just because I am not spiritual myself does not mean I do not recognize the power of spirituality within people's lives.

But with the deepest respect, Don, your personal experiences, beyond the five senses or otherwise, are not fact, as we typically define the word. This also applies to the works by Gregg Braden, which do not appear to be authoritative (not peer-reviewed), and so fall outside the realm of what we would call science. But this is all perfectly okay, because no... not everything needs to be proven empirically, to be recognized as facts, to have value.

And that's mostly why I am here at all. I think there are a great many things unaccounted for, but that doesn't make them less valuable. It just means we're at the point where we cannot understand them, and therefore cannot manipulate them in predictable ways.

Imagine if we understood how some people receive premonitions and were able to verify predictions... Imagine the power, for good or evil. In considering such, perhaps it is better indeed if such phenomenon are left unpredictable and discarded as fantasy.

This leads me to this question: is alchemy itself a science, or is it a spiritual practice that utilizes "aspects of science" to achieve the alchemists' aims? Based on our conversation here, I would guess the latter. Science (and chemistry) seems to be an aspect of alchemy, but the practice of alchemy transcends what science can deem as fact... at this time. Because yes, science is indeed EXTREMELY LIMITING, because scientists can make no assumptions, no guesses, and must strive for objectivity. Can you blame them? Imagine buying a car which hasn't been tested... but it was prayed for.

Also, I agree that alchemists have been seen in a very poor light. Most likely the vast majority of things alchemists did happened behind closed doors and was mostly undocumented. Also, I try to put myself in the position of a non-scientist in an age where the science of the time was misunderstood. I might look at a scientist as a mad man, who gazes into what looks like crystal balls filled with strange stinky substances. He's clearly out of his gourd! To top it all off, he doesn't do anything all day long except talk to himself! I'm out here digging in the ditches, and he's just sitting there babbling to himself, and that's not fair. His ilk needs to be eliminated from society, because he doesn't work and he's lazy and unproductive!

Men of science (and despite what I said before, I do believe alchemists were men of science) were never, historically, looked upon favorably except those rare moments when they were able to offer up something the rest of society could see as useful... unfortunately, it took their entire lives to make that one crowning achievement, and society simply didn't want to invest in them, and carry them along the entire time when it was wholly possible that wouldn't come up with anything valuable. From that perspective, I understand why they saw alchemists the way they did, and I don't blame them. I am only thankful that we now live in a world where societies are willing to invest in scientific discovery which tends to take a very long time.

And I think we, as a society, are kind of still at the point where we look at things spiritual, or metaphysical, in the same way the ancients looked at what we would classify as fundamentals of science. We're not willing to, as a culture, invest in these "crack pots" and carry them along, give them money, while they seemingly babble to themselves and don't do any work. So I think science has its place, when it comes to doing things like putting a ship in orbit. When it comes to living, and being a happy, creative, thoughtful human being... spiritualism also has its place. I don't see them as strictly divided, but I do think they each have their proper arena.

Eshai
05-27-2014, 03:25 PM
I wanted to come back and address this point:


I may also suggest that we may have another contrasting perspective in that it is not difficult to assume that you feel things that are newer historically are better, merely based on the simple theory of the evolution of knowledge. I do not hold fast to this theory, and in fact often dispute it. Much Human knowledge ... hard acquired over many hundreds even thousands of years ... has been lost in history's great tragedies, such as the burning of the Library of Alexandria, as well as to normal decay and neglect. But also, this religious dogma and fanaticism we have both agreed not to discuss has destroyed more valuable acquired knowledge than can be counted. Therefore, I cannot take the perspective that what we know now is all or the best of what has been known.

Actually I agree with you. I wonder about the time span of human existence, and I personally have many doubts about what contemporary scientific literature tells us about the history of human progress. This is only a feeling that I have. I often find myself lost in thought at the possibility of ancient worlds far more sophisticated than what we have come to call the pinnacle of civilization.

Anything built of iron and concrete would have been completely and utterly lost to time over the centuries. If a city were abandoned, over time there would be virtually no trace of it unless it were built in the manner of monumental architecture out of solid stone.

Vast spans of deep time are incomprehensible to us. We can fathom numbers in relation to one another, but a span of twenty thousand years... I believe cannot truly be appreciated by the human mind. And what might have existed in such times past, I can only imagine.

Ghislain
05-28-2014, 12:23 AM
Science is skewed with inconsistencies because it is the only the flamboyant or the money makers that can get the funding.

A project may be vitally important to the human race, but if that project offers no financial benefit to the backer, or the person selling the idea is dull and lacks lustre, then the funding is usually targeted to other less fulfilling, benefit friendly projects.

We are driven by greed to some extent and hence the puffers were allowed to thrive due to the blindness of greed; the puffers are still here with us today and they write the chronicles.

I came to this forum with no knowledge of Alchemy what-so-ever. I now know some of the terminology, can recognise the names of some of the past masters, have dabble with a few experiments, but I still understand just about as much as when I first started. The thing it has shown me however is that we walk a path that has many twists, turns, forks and potholes along the way and the destination is unknown; and that is the same for everyone (IMO). How can we measure where we are along our path now if we don't know our destination.



This leads me to this question: is alchemy itself a science, or is it a spiritual practice that utilizes "aspects of science" to achieve the alchemists' aims?

I would say that the scientist and the alchemist are similar, they both devote their time to finding answers. The difference is in the questions they ask. Science looks for answers in the known reality where the alchemist does not put such limits on their search, they look outside the written rules of "reality".

My question is, what is the aim of the Alchemist; is it untold wealth, or eternal life, and if it is either of these or both then what is the aim once that goal is achieved?

If I could put my finger on that it may be a guide to my destination if there is one, but at this present moment in time I would say that alchemy is about opening the mind to all possibility while keeping a sceptical approach to everything.



Also, I try to put myself in the position of a non-scientist in an age where the science of the time was misunderstood. I might look at a scientist as a mad man, who gazes into what looks like crystal balls filled with strange stinky substances. He's clearly out of his gourd! To top it all off, he doesn't do anything all day long except talk to himself! I'm out here digging in the ditches, and he's just sitting there babbling to himself, and that's not fair. His ilk needs to be eliminated from society, because he doesn't work and he's lazy and unproductive!

Doesn't it seem strange that the same perspective isn't applied to the majority of religious leaders?

Science tells us that humans evolved, and make a good argument to boot, but looking at some of the scientific facts...


Humans have spread across the entire planet, colonizing every corner. But humans have really been on the planet for a fraction of the lifetime of the Earth. Archeologists estimate that modern humans have been on the Earth for about 200,000 years.

Source: (http://www.universetoday.com/38125/how-long-have-humans-been-on-earth/)


The age of the Earth is 4.54 ± 0.05 billion years.

Source: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_the_Earth)


The best measurement of the age of the universe is 13.798±0.037 billion years.

Source: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_the_universe)

If we have evolved to ask the questions that we do in such a short period of time, then could the universe itself not have evolved even further? Many think that we should evolve toward the spiritual, but could it be possible that the spiritual evolved into us?

Maybe we are right where we should be! Are we trying to paint a rose?

Ghislain

Eshai
05-28-2014, 01:06 AM
Science is skewed with inconsistencies because it is the only the flamboyant or the money makers that can get the funding.
Since most scientific research is limited to the private sector, it is natural that only those endeavors which will promise profitable results will be invested in. $$ is always the name of the game, because no one works for poor people. While I can understand this, as this is a part of the great capitalism that has swept the globe, I too feel that it is unfortunate.


Doesn't it seem strange that the same perspective isn't applied to the majority of religious leaders?
Tell me about it. But the thing is, religious leaders are selling a feel-good product that a great many people are lining up to buy. It wasn't so with the old men of science--no one wanted their stuff. It takes society as a whole coming together and collectively saying, "We're going to put our energy into discovery, and we accept that much may be lost before we see the kind of gain that will help the world," because we are now at the point where further discovery requires a lot more than what one person can do with 120v power and a boiling flask.

So rationally, as much as I hate it, I must agree with you that the body of knowledge the "scientific method" has produced might indeed be skewed, held back, or bought and buried in favor of profits and strategic advantage (and both these things go hand-in-hand). Despite this, the truth will, I believe, eventually win out... perhaps only when enough people have died. I have to believe this, even if I am in the meantime only facilitating the corruption by "doing what I must to survive."

4th generation nuclear power, for example. Batteries that never need to be recharged. Focused air-intake combustion engines that can go 3k miles on one tank of fuel.

But look at what we're dealing with: We know cigarettes are bad for us, but we keep sucking on them anyway. I honestly think the only solution is about a thousand nukes going off all at once all over the surface of the planet.

III
05-30-2014, 07:54 AM
My question is, what is the aim of the Alchemist; is it untold wealth, or eternal life, and if it is either of these or both then what is the aim once that goal is achieved? ... If we have evolved to ask the questions that we do in such a short period of time, then could the universe itself not have evolved even further? Many think that we should evolve toward the spiritual, but could it be possible that the spiritual evolved into us?
Hi Ghislain,

You speak as if time is linear. When I started, a long long long long time ago, I thought that I was playing FOR eternal life, as if it was some kind of goal. I didn't get the joke. As EJ Gold says it "Everybody already has eternal life, and in the worst possible way". It's GROUNDHOG DAY all over again. And most don't remember.

Peter Ouspensky called it eternal recurrence. EJ Gold speaks of it similarly. It certainly describes my experience. There are quite a few movies that use it in the form of an experiment that goes bad, a bolt of lightning or something like that as a device for living a life over and over. There was also the book Simulchron 3 made into the movie The 13th Floor. That has nested virtual realities. So with nested virtual realities with each life livable in every possible variation, and each nested level of virtual reality has it's own complete set of possible life variations, therein exists "eternal" life. It all exists in one single cosmic instant. It's much more complicated than that. All descriptions are only rough approximations at best.

The Buddhist wheel of life idea is essentially the same. The objection has always been on the basis that one can't live millions and millions of lives since the total is greater than the duration of man on Earth or greater than the life of the universe or whatever. One can live and evolve during billions and billions of lifetimes while somebody else may only have lived and evolved for a few million. Alchemy as I know it now, is about taking conscious control of one's own design, growth and evolution. It's a process that never ends as far as I know, at least it hasn't for me or anybody still around these parts.

Basically one has to be willing to wake up to a relatively greater understanding of the creation over and over again ad infinitum.

One might say that life is where the rubber meets the road. Life is when something can be changed. If one is exploring the past, understanding can change, but the past can't be changed. One can live it again however with what has learned (not memorized) and live it differently. As one evolves, it is cumulative.

Ghislain
05-30-2014, 09:54 AM
III I agree with all that you say, but I was asking the question, "what is the aim of the Alchemist".

Wikipedia describes it thus:


Alchemy is an influential philosophical tradition whose practitioners have, from antiquity, claimed it to be the precursor to profound powers. The defining objectives of alchemy are varied, but historically have typically included one or more of the following goals: the creation of the fabled philosopher's stone; the ability to transform base metals into the noble metals (gold or silver); and development of an elixir of life, which would confer youth and longevity.

Sometimes the thought that we are eternal is depressing...like I can never switch off...just temporarily ;)

When I talk about the way we see life in the here and now of course I am going to talk of it linearly as that is what it is, I did not have my fifth birthday before my first and on my next I will be one year older.

What is this wheel of life, Samsara. Again I'll refer to wiki as it describes it better than I can:


Saṃsāra, (meaning "continuous flow"), is the repeating cycle of birth, life and death (reincarnation) within Hinduism, Buddhism, Bön, Jainism, Taoism, and Yârsân. In Sikhism this concept is slightly different and looks at one's actions in the present and consequences in the present.

According to the view of these religions, a person's current life is only one of many—stretching back before birth into past existences and reaching forward beyond death into future incarnations. During the course of each life the quality of the actions (karma) performed determine the future destiny of each person. The Buddha taught that there is no beginning to this cycle but that it can be ended through perceiving reality. The goal of these religions is to realize this truth, the achievement of which (like ripening of a fruit) is mokshaor liberation. In popular use, Samsara may refer to the world (in the sense of the various worldly activities which occupy ordinary, ignorant human beings), the various sufferings thereof; or (mistakenly) the unsettled and agitated mind through which reality is perceived.

Even with the non-linear view and escape from Samsara one still has to ask, "what next". Is this the true aim of everything we do, to understand and find out what next?
Without the linearity all is just what it is and there is no next, then what is the point?

Lets pop into the next fractal and do it all again...do we have a choice?

Ghislain

Edit: I was just thinking how my mother used to watch films and shout at the telly giving the characters instructions; so deeply engrossed that she felt part of the story...maybe that is what life is, maybe we are so engrossed in the story we fail to see the illusion.

III
05-31-2014, 07:53 AM
III I agree with all that you say, but I was asking the question, "what is the aim of the Alchemist".


Sometimes the thought that we are eternal is depressing...like I can never switch off...just temporarily ;)

When I talk about the way we see life in the here and now of course I am going to talk of it linearly as that is what it is, I did not have my fifth birthday before my first and on my next I will be one year older.


Even with the non-linear view and escape from Samsara one still has to ask, "what next". Is this the true aim of everything we do, to understand and find out what next?
Without the linearity all is just what it is and there is no next, then what is the point?

Lets pop into the next fractal and do it all again...do we have a choice?






Hi Ghislain,


So here we are in a virtual holodeck. Taking your 5th birthday example for linearity discussion will work. Consider that each "frame", like a movie, separate little pictures or data clusters or whatever one might want to call them. In recurrence, the descriptions, and my experience, is that one can leave ("die") or insert (reborn) at any time and place in ones entire life. The frame one enters in has the "memory" of ones past, of how one got to that frame traveling along the time line in normal order and where one is going to go in the next instant. From the instant one pops into a timeline the memory is of "always" having been there. It's like on GROUNDHOG DAY, everybody who woke up in the morning except Phil thought that everything was happening in normal linear order.


You might have been gone living different experiences and lives and suddenly you pop back in at the moment of blowing out the candles at your 5th birthday. Some people have a slight bobble with memory for a second. One time I opened my eyes after a meditation and found myself in the basement of a house I had moved out of decades before with that very thought, "what am I doing here?" with the urgent message to myself of that time; "SETTLE THAT LAWSUIT IMMEDIATELY OR IT WILL COST YOU EVERYTHING". However, I immediately had all my "current memory", of my life situation skim though my mind giving me a context for the time in my life I found myself living. This is the kind of "briefing" I get when I pop into life. It has happened many times. I had one experience with my wife. She saw me shot by 2 strangers at the door and then she was suddenly dead too. We each came back into our respective body and the first words out of her mouth were "DON'T OPEN THE DOOR" and the track we were listening to, CLOSE TO THE EDGE (Yes Songs) was back at the beginning.


So having the appearance of linearity is an illusion. The "memory" in each frame has a "how I got here" memory and how I exit to the next one" built in. Remembering outside of that is a consciously made decision


This is both what I have read and experienced.


So it isn't "eternal life" sought as a goal. It is already there. It is what gives us all the "time" we need to evolve our being.


It might be said that there are stages one goes through in Alchemy. We become "seekers". After finding, one is no longer a seeker. I find that people have all sorts of misunderstandings. I am no longer learning Alchemy, instead I'm practicing it. So now what is my goal, my object? I continue to build my being. I assist a person here or there in doing the same thing so they can make their escape


The only wealth I know of in all this is wisdom which one can take along. The optimist says "Hey wow man, we are eternal." The pessimist is afraid he is right.


Where "I AM" is the current pointer, for me whoever that is. What is the point? Do we have a choice?


Go along with me for a minute. Consider that my descriptions are not traditional


To become a Yogi requires a lot of study and practice and some are born that way and wake up in childhood. Various books on the subject talks about going into the ultimate Samadhi to physical death and that one is then in an eternal blissful fall into the Absolute. From here on Earth time zone how long is an "eternal" experience. Answer - "The blink of an eye" or maybe better, "The blink if an I". Consider then some Yogi who took this dive. It's a good chance to experience relativity in action or something. The in-fall appears accelerated as if by gravity. The faster one goes the more dilation of time as one approaches C. Anyway, it's an approximate description. So after an eternity of the ecstatic or blissful in-fall said Yogi opens his eyes and is still exhaling his last breath.


Or one becomes an Alchemist designing and implementing ones own consciousness.


So now it eventually gets down to the question "what does one do with awareness of eternal consciousness?". It really kicks the stuffing out of dreams and desires, nightmares and fears. At that point many decide it is about consciously experiencing life or whatever.

We have lot's of choices, there just isn't really an "out".


It is up to us to come up with our own entertainment, to have structured interactions with others helping one's continued growth and evolution, or one's own entertainment alone. The point of the whole thing is for each person to get their point. We, my partner and I have discussed this "point of it all" considerably. I can't say that we have ever come up with any satisfying answers. As far as I can tell, meaning is where you find it, and it doesn't travel well.

Ghislain
05-31-2014, 06:17 PM
Could the purpose be order?

Ghislain

Bel Matina
05-31-2014, 07:56 PM
Greetings to all,

It seems to me that while order, harmony, immortality and the like are all very appealing notions to nominate as the aim of the art, it is likely that these are all methods of the art rather than ends in themselves.

Alchemy is, by many turns, above all else the art of transformation guided by the will. Many authors caution us that to limit the scope of our art is to deny its very nature, our tree is universal, etc. If we accept this definition, then the aim of the alchemist in any given operation is to see the image to be projected stand firmly in the matter. In this case order is the fact of our aim, immortality a necessity for its execution and harmony the condition that predicts our success. This paints a less than exalted picture of the alchemist in general, but from a broader perspective the means of our art guarantee the virtue of its ends, to the extent that the execution is effective. I would not be the first to suggest that virtue is a byproduct of the art, and not its end per se.

DonSweet
06-01-2014, 06:47 AM
Enjoying this immensely.

I'll be digesting what's been said and return in coming weeks to respond.

A few thoughts in the meantime ...

Eshai ... they weren't necessarily assumptions as they were temporary conclusions based on incomplete information ... but there were also minor, nudging provocations mixed in, which I'm pleased to say you responded to most excellently.

As far as a general response to what Alchemy is, as has been said in several ways, that it is an individual exploration. I resist pop-culture pigeon-holing sources such as Wiki that frequently only have the superficial observations only an average person cares to bother with.

Additionally, to stop at European Alchemy in defining it is to ignore the vast majority of The Art. To say that European Alchemy over a few hundred years is the core of Alchemy is to ignore thousands of years and dozens of cultures on several continents. Now, no one has directly said this in posts, but it has been an underlying theme, and not just in this thread or even in this forum. The sad fact is, it is the simple-minded, uninitiated, uneducated, unresearched and even perfunctory observer that only sees an Alchemist as a Medieval hooded and cloaked crazy man staring into a flask babbling to himself in the wee hours of the morning alone in his dank hermitage.

One has to remember that Alchemy is first [as I see it and the historical record supports] a healing art, both for one's self and for others, and has been for thousands of years. The trailing poison of the Puffers pollutes this legacy, since they were singularly self-absorbed and wanted every ounce of credibility they could muster, discrediting the past.

In the past I've said things like, "We are One," and it is not just my belief (I am not truly a believer in "belief"), but it is my actual experience that our connection to each other, and in fact all that surrounds us, is our ability to consciously, willfully act in a way that will cause mutual benefit. In other words, we are here to heal each other, as well as maintain or even heal the world around us. The alternative choice? Mutual stagnation or even destruction. Frankly, I think I'll work towards the former ... first healing myself to some functional level, then offer what I've learned to others who seek it. If life is the choice between two diametrically opposed forces, I'll choose con-structive over de-structive (or stagnancy) any day of the week.

Lastly, for the time being, I have also suggested in other posts that we are born into a Sacred and Profound Ignorance. We simply do not "know."

I don't know about you-all, but it seems fairly evident to me that the primary objective of this experience is to find our way out of this Sacred Gifted Starting Point. In that, Alchemy as one of those methods I employ to discover just what this Universe is made of and how it functions.

The critical point in this citation is to show that Alchemy can be a transitional/transformational/transmutational force that moves us from one extreme, ignorance, to another, namely enlightenment and wisdom. In fact, it is my observation that [I]any path to enlightenment, but particularly including Alchemy, is a "mechanism" for one to reconcile what we "feel" and what we "know" into an understanding of what actually "is," particularly considering that what we have felt and thought we knew quite often has nothing to do with the reality of "is." (Does anyone else besides me see Salt, Sulphur and Mercury in this analogy?)

The real gold, the real "stone," the real wealth in Alchemy is -- yes -- wisdom ... as it is the only transmutable commodity of eternal value.

The wise and enlightened are strong within themselves. The wise heal others. The wise do not fear and in fact look forward to discovering the unknown. True wisdom is the willingness to seek it ... but also, it is the willingness to share it with those who also seek. This is "evolution" ...

... and it is inevitable ... for everyone ... sooner or later.

I'd submit that ignorance is the affliction and wisdom (not simply knowledge) is the cure.

Alchemy is far more than beakers, flasks and meditation. It is a method to actually come to know how the Universe works.

Love the discussion. I'm learning a lot.

III
06-02-2014, 07:04 PM
Hi DonSweet,


As is obvious I don't do European glassware alchemy. I have for a long time stated that synthesizing "KNOWING" with "UNDERSTANDING" gives "WISDOM". That of course is at best my approximate description. I see an unending pathway of evolution, of building our being. The way that can be spoken is not the eternal Tao.

DonSweet
07-05-2014, 05:26 AM
III ...

Please keep in mind that my references to European Alchemy were that of the tumultuous Medieval period and the split to chemistry coupled with the pop-culture simplistic definition of Alchemy, which all too often even Alchemists believe.

Dr.Zoidberg
08-01-2014, 02:01 PM
Mod Note: Continued from "The Alchemist" by Paulo Coelho and what happened to us after we read it... (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?4069-quot-The-Alchemist-quot-by-Paulo-Coelho-and-what-happened-to-us-after-we-read-it...&p=35229#post35229)
______________________________________


Some call it following your nose.

People were impressed by my father's abilities. He called it "bumbling."

I've taken it to the next level and call it "organized bumbling."

Playing the book now. It'll be a regular part of my routine for a while.

Synchronicity.

"I'm exactly were I'm supposed to be, doing precisely what I'm supposed to be doing, at exactly the moment I should be doing it."

How have you turned it into organized bumbling? Can you expand on this a bit?

"I'm exactly were I'm supposed to be, doing precisely what I'm supposed to be doing, at exactly the moment I should be doing it." <---Love this :)

DonSweet
08-04-2014, 04:25 AM
Sure Dr. ... happy to ...

I have little or no formal training in "chemistry," although I took a college course in 1980 after begging the professor to take the course.

This was after building my own first lab (not a mere chemistry set) when I was fifteen, then attempting to take chemistry in high school. I thoroughly enjoyed exploring the chemical and microbiological world at a very young age, but the educational system abruptly and callously cut me off from a formal pursuit of it.

High school protocol was to take biology before chemistry. Not only did this make no sense to me since biological organisms are literally composed of chemistry ... their very basis ... but I was never willing to become involved in operations such as dissection, even in my own lab. I inquired about chemistry without biology, but the system was intransigent, literally callous, essentially mocking of my request. Wanting to take chemistry, I reluctantly signed up for biology, but the moment they put a worm in front of me and told me to take it apart, I walked out. To this day, disassembling a body remains repugnant to me. I regretted not being able to take high school chemistry, but also to this day do not regret my refusal to a process I found/find repugnant.

As an aside, in the 2000's a female high school student in California sued her school system for the exact same requirement, claiming the requirement to take biology first was unjust. She won and was able to proceed to chemistry without biology.

Anyway, the process of bumbling in my Alchemical pursuits picks up where I left off in my teens, however rather expanded from my resources back then. I have a late adult wisdom and experience and rather more equipment to use. In addition to reading and researching, I'm also carefully studying both my equipment, its capabilities and its potential to create benevolent "products."

I wholly consider it "bumbling" in that I have no training per se and have no supervision or mentoring to achieve any of my rather fuzzy goals, which will evolve as I educate myself and proceed to interact with all this recently acquired gadgetry.

Frankly, I'm following the example of others that came before me who also had no mentors or supervision. I'll tip-toe ... and perhaps even occasionally sprint ... out to the end of that famous metaphorical limb, frankly with great glee.

Has someone been there before? Sure ... but perhaps not precisely in the same way I will.

At the moment, my current "bible" is "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Alchemy" by Dennis William Hauck, which is technically a misnomer since it takes far more than an idiot to absorb and comprehend Mr. Hauck's writing. A fantastic read, whose breadth and depth will take me years to properly assimilate. I'm in awe.

Dr.Zoidberg
08-04-2014, 01:53 PM
Sure Dr. ... happy to ...

I have little or no formal training in "chemistry," although I took a college course in 1980 after begging the professor to take the course.

This was after building my own first lab (not a mere chemistry set) when I was fifteen, then attempting to take chemistry in high school. I thoroughly enjoyed exploring the chemical and microbiological world at a very young age, but the educational system abruptly and callously cut me off from a formal pursuit of it.

High school protocol was to take biology before chemistry. Not only did this make no sense to me since biological organisms are literally composed of chemistry ... their very basis ... but I was never willing to become involved in operations such as dissection, even in my own lab. I inquired about chemistry without biology, but the system was intransigent, literally callous, essentially mocking of my request. Wanting to take chemistry, I reluctantly signed up for biology, but the moment they put a worm in front of me and told me to take it apart, I walked out. To this day, disassembling a body remains repugnant to me. I regretted not being able to take high school chemistry, but also to this day do not regret my refusal to a process I found/find repugnant.

As an aside, in the 2000's a female high school student in California sued her school system for the exact same requirement, claiming the requirement to take biology first was unjust. She won and was able to proceed to chemistry without biology.

Anyway, the process of bumbling in my Alchemical pursuits picks up where I left off in my teens, however rather expanded from my resources back then. I have a late adult wisdom and experience and rather more equipment to use. In addition to reading and researching, I'm also carefully studying both my equipment, its capabilities and its potential to create benevolent "products."

I wholly consider it "bumbling" in that I have no training per se and have no supervision or mentoring to achieve any of my rather fuzzy goals, which will evolve as I educate myself and proceed to interact with all this recently acquired gadgetry.

Frankly, I'm following the example of others that came before me who also had no mentors or supervision. I'll tip-toe ... and perhaps even occasionally sprint ... out to the end of that famous metaphorical limb, frankly with great glee.

Has someone been there before? Sure ... but perhaps not precisely in the same way I will.

At the moment, my current "bible" is "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Alchemy" by Dennis William Hauck, which is technically a misnomer since it takes far more than an idiot to absorb and comprehend Mr. Hauck's writing. A fantastic read, whose breadth and depth will take me years to properly assimilate. I'm in awe.

Thank you for the response. We have been keeping meticulous records of time/date of our steps to see to what extent (or if) planetary influences are in play. When you mentioned bumbling vs. organized bumbling, we thought maybe you also had some type of organization system. Perhaps we misunderstood?

DonSweet
08-04-2014, 06:15 PM
Dr. --

I think I see now what you were asking ... essentially whether or not there was a system employed.

Well, in a way, yes.

When you don't know where you're going, you at least assemble the things you need to get there ... boots, pack, tent, warm and cold clothes, food, etc, in the case of backpacking. Then you set out on the trail.

I've never believed in the concept of "lost." The world is too small for that. I suppose what I mean is that you'll always, eventually, be able to set your feet on dry land.

The pathway shows itself to you ... "Don't go that way" is earmarked by failure, which is technically a positive response. You've acquired information. Whether it's undesirable is a matter of personal perception. The acquisition of it is positive.

As in the case of backpacking, there will be known quantities in an Alchemical adventure. Water boils at a certain point in a certain atmosphere. A Soxhlet extractor works/functions in a certain way. Condensation will occur in a certain fashion under specific conditions ... so many things are known quantities.

What is not known ... at least to the participant ... is the results or "destination" ... at least to a certainty. Many of us may read about a certain result, such as distilling alcohol seven times, but one of the objectives of Alchemy is to personally perform it.

In fact, it is the very essence of Alchemy to personally perform tasks and put one's own energy into the process. Unlike chemistry, there is a highly significant "non-physical" element to Alchemy. It is literally the interaction of physical behaviors and non-physical ethereal behaviors. And since the Alchemist themselves are a highly individuated source of ethereal energy, results for one may be entirely different for another.

The point being that although a destination may be the same ... perhaps the ultimate goal being a Philosopher's Stone ... the route to obtain that destination/goal may be entirely different from Alchemist to Alchemist.

Western thinking and empirical science has a hard time with this. All processes should be repeatable ... provable ... empirically observable ... or they are not valid.

This is fixed thinking.

This is fixed thinking in a fluid Universe.

Are things fixed?

Yes.

Are things fluid?

Yes.

They are both at the same time.

That's where Western empirical thinking breaks down.

One way of looking at it is the "fact" that First Matter is chaotic ... yet everything is composed of First Matter. The resulting combinations vary. How do they vary and why? Only The Universe knows for sure.

All we can do is [humbly] perform and observe (and, in fact, participate). All we can do is work our way down a largely unknown trail, test the best route as we go, and follow the signs as we read them.

We are born into a Sacred and Profound Ignorance. This is a great gift.

The Great and Sacred Adventure is in the adventure itself.

Were everything known, including the destination, it would neither be great nor an adventure.

Dr.Zoidberg
08-08-2014, 04:43 PM
Dr. --

I think I see now what you were asking ... essentially whether or not there was a system employed.

Well, in a way, yes.

When you don't know where you're going, you at least assemble the things you need to get there ... boots, pack, tent, warm and cold clothes, food, etc, in the case of backpacking. Then you set out on the trail.

I've never believed in the concept of "lost." The world is too small for that. I suppose what I mean is that you'll always, eventually, be able to set your feet on dry land.

The pathway shows itself to you ... "Don't go that way" is earmarked by failure, which is technically a positive response. You've acquired information. Whether it's undesirable is a matter of personal perception. The acquisition of it is positive.

As in the case of backpacking, there will be known quantities in an Alchemical adventure. Water boils at a certain point in a certain atmosphere. A Soxhlet extractor works/functions in a certain way. Condensation will occur in a certain fashion under specific conditions ... so many things are known quantities.

What is not known ... at least to the participant ... is the results or "destination" ... at least to a certainty. Many of us may read about a certain result, such as distilling alcohol seven times, but one of the objectives of Alchemy is to personally perform it.

In fact, it is the very essence of Alchemy to personally perform tasks and put one's own energy into the process. Unlike chemistry, there is a highly significant "non-physical" element to Alchemy. It is literally the interaction of physical behaviors and non-physical ethereal behaviors. And since the Alchemist themselves are a highly individuated source of ethereal energy, results for one may be entirely different for another.

The point being that although a destination may be the same ... perhaps the ultimate goal being a Philosopher's Stone ... the route to obtain that destination/goal may be entirely different from Alchemist to Alchemist.

Western thinking and empirical science has a hard time with this. All processes should be repeatable ... provable ... empirically observable ... or they are not valid.

This is fixed thinking.

This is fixed thinking in a fluid Universe.

Are things fixed?

Yes.

Are things fluid?

Yes.

They are both at the same time.

That's where Western empirical thinking breaks down.

One way of looking at it is the "fact" that First Matter is chaotic ... yet everything is composed of First Matter. The resulting combinations vary. How do they vary and why? Only The Universe knows for sure.

All we can do is [humbly] perform and observe (and, in fact, participate). All we can do is work our way down a largely unknown trail, test the best route as we go, and follow the signs as we read them.

We are born into a Sacred and Profound Ignorance. This is a great gift.

The Great and Sacred Adventure is in the adventure itself.

Were everything known, including the destination, it would neither be great nor an adventure.

Thanks for this. The more we search, the more we are leaning towards what you say about every Alchemist having a unique path. Do you think this means there are many versions of the P.Stone or just one which is sought out? Sorry for the inquisition, just interested to hear your view...

DonSweet
08-16-2014, 07:09 AM
Dr. --

As for the Philosopher's Stone, I can only speak to belief and possibly "faith" about my expectations ... and not religious faith, but faith in the construct of the Universe.

Never having produced the Philosopher's Stone, and in fact never gotten to any point in Alchemical pursuits, either laboratory process or personal process, where I can claim I've made a threshold crossing into a realm where such a substance has become evident, I can only discuss "feeling."

Since I was a child, I have heard about eternal-life-this-and-eternal-life-that. Naturally, it becomes a point of curiosity. Is it earned? Is it ordained upon someone? Is it a gift? For only specially chosen ones? By whom? Under what criteria?

Obviously, it stimulates a plethora of questions, but the one most prominent to me in recent years has been, "Don't we already have it?"

If nothing in the Universe is ever created or destroyed, but merely changed, wouldn't our essence already exist prior to this life and continue on after physical life ceases? What aspect or aspects of that life we describe is "essence" and which is disposable?

As you can see, I'm discussing this in very rudimentary terms, but isn't the pursuit of a Philosopher's Stone the chase for eternal life? Do we not all in some way crave staying alive? Even if we live disgusted, fed up and ready to leave this planet of woes, isn't there a physical aspect of ourselves that craves survival?

I believe that the pursuit of the Philosopher's Stone -- or any health-based aspect of Alchemy -- must include the full knowledge (not simply belief) that we already have health and well-being, and in fact we exist eternally ...

... perhaps not as we are at this moment, but "exist."

An Alchemical process is a transformation ... a morphing. It takes substances on the physical (and non-physical) planes and alters their nature to become benevolent ... more benevolent ... to rejuvenate ... or a source of sustenance ... meant literally as a means to sustain ourselves.

It is, however, as anyone can see by simply observing the most basic processes in the Universe, such as the birth and death of stars, that there is no such thing as "eternal" on the physical plane. It is therefore assumable that all an Alchemical process can produce is a delay to a natural, inevitable process ... that rejuvenation in all likelihood could not continue indefinitely.

So ...

All these very basic observations should contribute to the reality of any Alchemical process we undertake. We observe, emulate and utilize the processes of the Universe, its chemistry, physics, mathematics, geometry, mechanics as well as currently inexplicable processes that are beyond our comprehension that may be both physical and non-physical.

Just as one learns the Philosopher's Stone is not an actual "stone" but a potential life-sustaining and rejuvenating substance, as we work and grow towards its acquisition, we also learn what it can and cannot do, and what it is and what it is not.

How one gets there is the question. Whether one gets there is even more highly in question.

It may be that the journey to the Philosopher's Stone is so radically different than the paradigm most of us perceive, that we reject, ignore or completely miss what The Stone actually is.

Perhaps this is why so many great, recorded and famous Alchemists have known only normal lifespans. Their journey was profound and historically relevant, but they never actually achieved a transition.

It's also possible that some may have achieved transition ... meaning from "normal" to extraordinary ... and faked their deaths for anonymity.

We simply do not know.

But to directly answer your question, you may have guessed from my lead-in, that I firmly believe there is no single formula or pathway to achieve a Philosopher's Stone. It must be individually acquired by the Alchemist, each having their own path.

Metaphorically, look at it in terms of having the concept of a seed ... not actually having (or being) the actual seed ... yet you know it can be formed, nurtured and it will grow given the correct circumstances.

How and what seed is formed or acquired will be entirely up to the Alchemist. What nutrients it is fed and what -- or even whether -- it "becomes" at all cannot be known until the individual Alchemist interacts with it.

If this were not so, we'd have found the McDonald's hamburger recipe centuries ago and millions would be living for millennia.

One brief glimpse into the functionalities of our bodies and we can see how complex life is. One brief glimpse into our hearts and we can see how bafflingly complex our non-physical elements are.

Not only must the acquisition of something as profound as the Philosopher's Stone be simply mandated to be complex by default, it must unquestioningly be individuated. No factory could ever produce it.

However, I do believe that a school could teach it, launching students in their pursuit of it. I do not believe, however, that our current cultures, Western, Eastern or otherwise, are capable of handling the actual philosophical nature of these pathways. It exists outside the current paradigm of understanding or even acceptance. In fact, I believe the transition of Human culture to reach that point to be a quantum leap currently so vast as to be presently inconceivable.

Individually ... a distant outside chance ... at best.

III
08-17-2014, 01:13 AM
Hi DonSweet,


It might be worth considering what are possible definitions of "Eternal Life". That may not mean one long life in the same body. Maybe it is more Groundhog Day style, living parts of one's life over and over in endless variations, consciously, as opposed to what E.J. Gold calls "the worst possible way";living one's life over and over, recurrence, unconsciously, not remembering, not evolving, not getting out of it.

DonSweet
08-17-2014, 05:48 AM
Sure III ...

Everything is possible in supposition.

It's also been proposed/suggested that we are all part of the same spiritual body, perhaps mingling spiritual bits each time we incarnate. With that, we each could, indeed, have been Abraham Lincoln, or Caesar, or even Genghis Khan ... at least in part.

As an artist (photographic, graphic, writing, woodworking, etc.), I have an active imagination. I can imagine quite a bit. I can "suppose" in great detail.

However ...

I own several thousand dollars worth of lab equipment, a plethora of woodworking, metal working and mechanical tools, about thirty cameras and a full color photo lab in order to explore what is real. That, and to discover what could become real.

I am interested in manifestation, and whether that manifestation is tangible or intangible isn't a matter of imagination, supposition or even debate, but fact.

I'm currently manifesting a garage (by myself with my own two hands) for my dune buggy. This will make it possible for me to rebuild it (for the fourth time). That will give me (and others) many manifestations, both tangible and intangible, including joy.

Supposition?

Part of my realm, but not my focus.

http://i1295.photobucket.com/albums/b633/DonSweet11/SANY5960_zps55b1baa8.jpg

DonSweet
08-18-2014, 05:22 AM
III ...

A couple of additional thoughts on your proposition of repetitive cycles.

You may actually have a valid, observable point.

In the case of living things, plants in particular, seasonal cycles of growth and degradation, leading to even more growth, returning to degradation, shows us that "undulation" of a sort can be benevolent, even life-extending.

Where environmental factors could cause death, changes occur in the cyclical reaction of the plant to environmental influences, allowing the plant to "go dormant" but remain alive until those influences become more favorable. This is a Groundhog Day of sorts for perennial plants.

Man's knowledge -- as we understand it today -- hasn't reached the point where we fully grasp renewing influences, or even substances, of the environment. We do not fully understand what processes stimulate growth in babies and children, where adults slowly lose these processes.

Why is it that we cannot renew or refresh our glandular system? Just like muscles and our nervous system renew themselves with sleep/rest, why must each year past a certain point in our adult lives allow for a little less recovery? Why do parts wear out if we clearly, unquestioningly have the metabolic capacity to heal?

Why aren't we healing back to "new"?

If every seven years every cell in our bodies has been replaced, why is each "batch" of cells just a little less virile than the last?

Does a tree not have bright green leaves every Spring? Does a cut on our lip or finger not heal to the point where we barely notice the original damage or can't find evidence of it at all?

Why "must" things get old?

Is there not some cycle of healing we could introduce that was fully healing and renewing to the point where we were actually new again?

Where is First Matter in this equation?

Makes me wonder what's wrong with this picture ... the picture of accepting degradation as a matter of fact ... or technically, inevitability.

Is it?

Ghislain
08-18-2014, 02:22 PM
DS, I read somewhere that death was an accident of nature; it was in an evolution publication and it explained that death has
no benefit, but it also has no hindrance either. It does not get bred out as most detrimental traits do because we do all our
necessary breeding before we die.

I guess unless death becomes a disadvantage we are stuck with it...as far as nature is concerned.

Ghislain

Andro
08-18-2014, 04:00 PM
Death/Black Stage is essential to Evolution/Re-Incrudation/etc...

The Phoenix must die in order to be reborn from its own ashes.

No Death - No Alchemy.

IMSU

Nibiru
08-18-2014, 11:09 PM
Death/Black Stage is essential to Evolution/Re-Incrudation/etc...

The Phoenix must die in order to be reborn from its own ashes.

No Death - No Alchemy.

IMSU

Forgive me for jumping into this thread without first catching up on the past posts but at the moment it's quite a bit to read before posting. The reason I feel the need to post here is because I noticed my friend Androgynus's post, that I quoted above, about the necessity of death in the alchemical process. Now I'm not claiming to be an adept by any means, and have only recently began to study classical alchemy over the last few years but from the beginning I've felt that there's something wrong with the idea that death is a prerequisite for the alchemical path. Being that I began my work by attempting a path that's based on spontaneous generation my views may be slightly biased, but this is still the way I see it. While I feel that some paths may require a death and rebirth or resurrection of the matter in question, I don't think that it is or should be a requirement for the work.

I've recently ran across an article discussing some of Ali Puli's writings on the concept of a 'central salt'. In his comments I found this statement that I feel backs up my revelations concerning an alchemical 'death' and why it may not be necessary.

For those who are interested you may wish to read the entire article as it's quite informative IMO. Here's a link to the article: http://thefirelizard.wordpress.com/tag/ali-puli/


Ali Puli articulates the difference between alchemical dissolution and putrefaction, highlighting that “… all that we therefore perform, happens through the process of a simple dissolution and coagulation; nothing comes about through any process of decay, such as people generally believe to be the case.” He elaborates upon the planting of a seed into soil; that it does not decay but is instead swelled and turned to slime via the vital salt sinking “down into the soil with the dew and the rain penetrating through the shell of the seed into the kernel”; that the vital image of the plant or tree arising from this dissolution eventually acquires an existence “in material form through its own vital salt, vitriol and water” and is coagulated as a result of being “constantly fed by the penetrating vital salt from dew and rain” percolating into the soil. “From this process there grows a large plant or a tall tree, provided the soil remains, wherein the nourishing sal centrale sustains and feeds it.”

III
08-18-2014, 11:57 PM
Hi DonSweet,


I never set up my darkroom after the last move. I have an Omega D2 and all the rest of the stuff. I never got into color, just seeking perfection in B&W. I packed it up when I was too sick to do much and then technology changed tremendously. My experience is of both reincarnation in a more or less "traditional form" of serial lives. I've also experienced recurrence, "deja vu all over again". I suspect that experiencing it the way I have requires a continuity of consciousness. In doing Tantric Alchemy it might be said that we are sharing parts of our being with others and they with me/us. And as you say what we consider to be our "self" is a fractal fragment of a larger being.




As an Alchemist one of the traditional stakes for which we typically play is "Eternal Life". I would define Eternal life" as being different than "Immortal life". I doubt Immortal life is achievable or desirable. Eternal life or a reasonable facsimile I think is achievable. Whether it is desirable is certainly something only the person involved can tell. As far as I know there is no way to know what it is like in advance. The old adage "Be careful what you ask for" applies in my opinion.


The oldest organism in Utah is at least 15,000 years old. It is a specific scrub oak patch (species) (single organism) that hasn't been able to start growing where it is since the last ice age ended. Some Aspens may be as old as well as other scrub oaks. These are typically burned down to the ground from time to time and sprout from it's roots.

Kiorionis
08-19-2014, 04:46 AM
Forgive me for jumping in
Forgiven :)



I've recently ran across an article discussing some of Ali Puli's writings on the concept of a 'central salt'. In his comments I found this statement that I feel backs up my revelations concerning an alchemical 'death' and why it may not be necessary.

This is an interesting article, and is somewhat in line with my understanding of the Central Salt as being generated before putrefaction, and evolved and fixed on account of it own inward coction.

Nibiru
08-20-2014, 11:59 PM
Forgiven :)



This is an interesting article, and is somewhat in line with my understanding of the Central Salt as being generated before putrefaction, and evolved and fixed on account of it own inward coction.

I'm glad someone found it of value :) I've only recently been contemplating the principles of a 'central salt' and have noticed that there's not a lot of information available on the subject. A search in this forum has not turned up much. I was wondering if perhaps you'd be willing to start a thread concerning the subject and see where it heads?

thanks in advance

Krisztian
08-23-2014, 10:15 PM
. . . Central Salt as being generated before putrefaction, . . .

The salt that Artephius and Philalethes both describe is a central aspect of a particular path I know. Putrefaction is an operation that takes the mercurial water into colour of black (Philalethes called it, Duenech, the black lake), and via circulation fixes it to purest white salt.

The term Central Salt I believe was used by Pernety.

Kiorionis
08-24-2014, 05:03 AM
The salt that Artephius and Philalethes both describe is a central aspect of a particular path I know. Putrefaction is an operation that takes the mercurial water into colour of black (Philalethes called it, Duenech, the black lake), and via circulation fixes it to purest white salt.

The term Central Salt I believe was used by Pernety.

Interesting, thanks for the info. I haven't read much Artephius, I'll have to look him up.

Krisztian
08-24-2014, 07:44 PM
. . . . fixed on account of it own inward coction.

Something you'll find in those mentioned works, Artephius, Philalethes, Puli as well, that what I quoted you saying is quite common, and truly the way of the path they describe. One of the reasons why people miss the point, and now commonplace to have people carry out meaningless chemical processes, without knowing what the old alchemists referred to as, mercury. And how to fix it so that a matter can evolve by the natural hand of Nature. A matter with it or without it, "mercury", will exhibit two different outcomes.

So you give the exact recipe to one without the knowledge of "mercury" and they'll be cursing you that the recipe is flawed. It is truly humbling and most fascinating aspect of alchemy for me at least.

Andro
08-25-2014, 11:07 AM
So you give the exact recipe to one without the knowledge of "mercury" and they'll be cursing you that the recipe is flawed.

Hi Kris,

I wonder, from your personal perspective and understanding, what is the hermetic/philosophical definition, origin and role of 'Mercury' (both universally and in the above context)?

Krisztian
08-25-2014, 11:59 PM
. . . , what is . . . role of 'Mercury' (both universally and in the above context)?

I am not an adequate philosopher, only by fire.

How Philalethes and Artephius meant it: to bring about the great fermentations, and to achieve the perfect generation, for the essence of "mercury" is that of the seed of metals, or in other terms the solvent, this mineral fire, fiery-water that is fixed to the pure, white earthy salt.

But what's more important to say is, Philalethes mentions it on only six occasions in all of his, entire works. Two out of that are so cleverly articulated that the true "mercury" one would be hard pressed to know how to prepare. Brilliant! Artephius plainly explained it only twice that I could find. Consequently, I have never, not even once, read on any forums, alchemy or occult, how to prepare it, only, funny enough, on some forum completely on another genre, in a form of an innocent question unrelated to alchemy. I mean, how those two philosophers describe the preparation.

DonSweet
08-28-2014, 05:45 AM
Great turns on this thread. Plenty to digest, and perhaps to respond to after mental processes take their course.

First chance I've had to reply to III --

Great response. I enjoyed it.

It wasn't until my recent return to the lab that I made an "alchemical connection" to photography ... traditional photography, of course, as you mention. Great parallels there. It is creation and expression -- perhaps even a twinge of immortalizing -- through the use of optical and chemical processes combined with the will, vision and intent of the creator. It is much harder to see any of these parallels in modern digital photography.

A key option in that medium is to allow artificial energy to produce the end result. Other than gears and belts in some automated photographic processing, this is simply not possible in traditional "wet" photography. The result must include the personal effort, skills, experience, knowledge and time-proven practice of the participant or participants.

That's why I continue to pursue photography both in WWII reenacting with period equipment and even materials were possible, and as a hobby artist with equipment from more recent decades (color up to 20x24). I will likely never abandon the chemistry of photography since that draws more of my personal essence in the process of creation. An automated press-and-shoot digital photograph denies the image an aspect of uniqueness I'm unwilling to relinquish.

Also ... interesting views on immortality/eternal life. I'd put "eternal" in a category unattainable on the physical plane, largely since it's unlikely the Universe itself is eternal. And I'd probably only approach a concept of immortality as far as "sustained life" since any physical entity is subject to destruction from a myriad of sources at any given time.

In my view, "eternal" is far beyond the reach of anything physical, so if indeed it does exist, it could only do so on an ethereal level. And as far as the existence of the very concept of "eternal" is concerned, I can only perceive that state as a perpetual undulation.

As for Krisztian, Androgynus, Kiorionis, and Nibiru's posts, I'm also enjoying your discussion on mercury and salt. At this point in my development, I can only really relate on a rudimentary level in lab work, but have a high level of understanding in relation to "internal" work within the alchemist. I'm becoming anxious to get more lab work started to manifest what I've been working on internally. Perhaps Fall will afford me more lab time.

bleeding yolk
08-28-2014, 10:13 PM
......i have to say , that this is quite a thread........one thing that was briefly touched on , but not elaborated , was the concept of the demiurge........in many tradition ones goal is to become the demiurge (divine craftsman) in the co -creation of reality......if and when one attains to this level , objectivity and subjectivity are one and the same and everything is instantly able to be manifested according to the laws of will , attention , power .......the macrocosm in the microcosm and vice versa (the fixed intent or stone).........

DonSweet
11-27-2014, 07:42 PM
To me, this is the most provocational and perhaps most profound statement made in this thread (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?2451-The-Celestial-Agriculture) ...

"... but to get them to read whats going on between the lines, behind the scenes...this is easy when we forget about chemicals and periodic tables and start focusing on the qualities that the operations give to the matters, it is then that we realize that the operations are more philosophic than anything especially when we realize that chemicals do nothing in alchemy. So any philosophic product we get is a product of this philosophy not a product of a chemical manipulation/reaction."

To me, it's cause for great study. It's also, however, a potential source of great pain for the explorer.

Once one steps out of earthly conventional wisdom -- The Paradigm -- of physical senses, it is a tricky path. Despite historical accounts and records of the Masters that tread this path previously, it's largely undocumented. It's also largely ridiculed (by the uninitiated).

By "initiated" I am given to understand that it is those who have come to realize that these reactions and transmutations on the physical plane are only faint reflections of what is happening elsewhere.

"Elsewhere."

It's an interesting concept.

Personally, my journey has been one of facing the difficulty of assimilating to "here," rather than the other way around. Most are so familiar with their five-senses perceptions that they find it difficult to step away from them. I often find it difficult to allow myself to be limited by them ... which can be not just necessary, but essential to physical survival.

Ever go a full day without eating? Without even thinking about food? Yeah ... that's the place. Ever find yourself in the aftermath of a life-threatening situation where you stepped in and did something to prevent harm, when you had no thought of your own safety or survival? Yeah ... that's the place.

But it's not all good to be anchored "elsewhere." That place is murky and convoluted, largely uncharted, largely undocumented. The blurring occurs from being cut off from the memory of it ... "there, but not there." Sometimes I admire people who are anchored here, in the limited physical paradigm, that have it nailed and virtually perfected it ... the accomplished scientist, the successful entrepreneur, the shockingly talented artist, the truly great and insightful leader, even people who have simply acquired great wealth.

Unfortunately, all too often these people lack an understanding of "elsewhere," and it's rare and precious to find one that has both.

Whether you find Spiritus Mundi -- or The Stone Itself, for that matter -- from the outside of the flask looking in, or from the inside of a flask looking out, I'm learning that the flask is necessary in all cases.

Yeah ... it's a riddle.

But I'm also learning that the cycle of learning-teaching-healing-learning-teaching-healing is an essential part of it.

Without that, we're just lone beakers boiling water. There has to be connection to a larger process. Mutuality. Connection.

The image of the Medieval Alchemist slaving away alone in his lab is just wrong, as I see it. If the Alchemist is not connected, not healing, teaching, sharing and learning it's a dead end ... as is cycling through consumption of mind-altering substances. Any of these things are merely gateways. Every threshold is a gateway and never a destination.

The only "destination" that can ever be considered is Perfection ...

... and how far away is that?

Ghislain
11-27-2014, 11:25 PM
When you boil it all down DS the only thing that is of significance to the individual is the information/data they can retain/recall.

With an open mind you take in information, break it down and reconstitute it in a way that makes sense to you, gather some more and find it doesn't fit with what once made sense so you break it all down again and reconstitute it till it makes some sense to you, gather some more...does that sound like alchemy?

Does it matter in what realm that information is perceived? I don't know the answer to that.

When we leave this realm we take that information with us, so I guess it needs to be passed on in some way; written in a book, captured in a creation of some sort such as art or architecture, passed on by word of mouth etc...

If I were to believe the information I have gleaned from my journeys on psychedelics (never used for recreation) then I have seen near purity of pure energy beings. I still have a lot of unanswered questions in this respect, but who can say it was not all real, and why would they if they truly are looking for the truth; its just another path to tread...leave no stone unturned so to speak.

The 'normal' people will tell people like us that we shouldn't think so deeply...if not us then who will. It's ok for people to live their life in the bliss of ignorance if that's what they choose to do, but IMO that is stagnation...even if I do envy them sometimes.

There is no destination, just more and more information/experience; perhaps that is all there is.

Perhaps perfection is walking the path, taking in the view and appreciating it all. ;)

Ghislain

Edit: could that be what love is...appreciation?

DonSweet
12-10-2014, 05:18 PM
Interpretation:

Watched THIS VIDEO (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?4050-Iron-Soul-of-Gold&p=36196#post36196) with great interest.

There are parallels here to Native American spirituality and philosophy .... and also parallels comments I've made here regarding these types of journeys.

I've asserted many times that [particularly Alchemical, but also any other] paths are individuated.

In the video, DJ asserts this vigorously, simply by refusing to be the object or source of this healing. He is not "hiding" or being secretive, but is utterly humbling himself ...

"This has nothing to do with me. It's just meditation. Anyone can do that."

Naturally, I'm interpreting and paraphrasing, but that's the message I get.

We can talk amongst ourselves about this until we're blue in the face, but until we have personal experience, little if any progress will be made in our lives. This should be our joy. This should be the focus and source of our camaraderie ... the journey ... not, "I just took this great pill. You should take it too!"

Another way of putting it is the fact that there's no magic pill, no empirical process, no recipe, no factory assembly line product that can get you there.

You come to some level of "knowing," then you take the journey yourself.

In Universal Construct, this seems to be a deeply sacred mandate.

"Homogenizing" seems to be an anti-sacred process. Each must find their own way.

This isn't what Puffers wanted. They wanted a pat, proven recipe ... and still do. They want the "gold" to be easy ...

... when "gold" is merely a metaphor.

Our mass production, rubber-stamped, ducks-in-a-row, cookie-cutter "civilized" culture is proving to be severely flawed.

It's not working. It's not fulfilling. It's anti-creative. It's subsistence and stagnation, not evolution.

Argue all you like that the industrial revolution has brought prosperity, but A) at what cost? and B) can you actually, truly, deny that there's been severe repression?

Can you honestly state that the majority of people are not kept from evolving? Advancing? Improving? Exploring? Learning? Expanding?

Aren't these things reserved for the very few? Don't the rest struggle? Is it or is it not a fact that only a small group of our seven billion have any real opportunities whatsoever?

I think the point here is that we've altered The Human Experience to an insidious end for the sake of impatience. We want the magic pill. We want instant gratification. We want it all and we want it now ... when ... in fact ... based on Universal Construct ... it can only be acquired after a journey of learning and appreciation ...

... and that journey must be individuated.

Technically, the Puffers won. Our modern, civilized societies are based on these principles of cookie-cutter instant gratification.

Childish.

Illusion.

In fact, DElusion ...

... since any such gratification is shallow, and literally false.

The unarguable proof is in the result, plain for all to see ... channeling the energy of many for the benefit of a few.

This is upside-down.

Our earthly construct ... the mechanisms of culture ... are contrary to Universal Construct ... which is and does support individual prosperity and growth.

That's where we should be, and that's how this should all work.

I can't imagine anyone arguing against this principle, but I'm sure it will happen.

Feel free to bring it on.

JDP
12-14-2015, 08:01 AM
Thanks guys for your suggestions and advice, I agree that it may not be the true philosophers stone or traditional alchemy, cause I've been experimenting with this for 4 years I didnt want to let it go without trying a few things.

Old alchemical axiom: "If it don't transmute, it ain't worth a hoot!" ;)

Peter Barnes
12-14-2015, 04:28 PM
Thanks JDP - Which ancient text did you get that from? I'd like to read that.

What does ain't worth a hoot mean? Does that mean it's not worth anything, it's basically garbage? It all depends on what you are looking for, lets say you stumble on something that extends your life but doesnt transmute base metals to Gold, then that still is a great thing right? For you maybe it isn't as long as it doesn't transmute then it's a load of ....., I understand if that is your opinion but I feel that you can still experiment and see what results, after all we are all experimenting, I assume none have reached the blessed elixir.

May I humbly ask if this isn't the way then what is? From your experience I mean.

JDP
12-14-2015, 05:05 PM
Thanks JDP - Which ancient text did you get that from? I'd like to read that.

What does ain't worth a hoot mean? Does that mean it's not worth anything, it's basically garbage? It all depends on what you are looking for, lets say you stumble on something that extends your life but doesnt transmute base metals to Gold, then that still is a great thing right? For you maybe it isn't as long as it doesn't transmute then it's a load of ....., I understand if that is your opinion but I feel that you can still experiment and see what results, after all we are all experimenting, I assume none have reached the blessed elixir.

May I humbly ask if this isn't the way then what is? From your experience I mean.

The "ancient axiom" I just invented it last week (it's a jest, that's why the *WINK* is there at the end.) The alchemists were not very tolerant or patient with other people's views or methods. They constantly attacked the "sophists", "puffers", "multipliers", "vulgar chymists", etc. saying their methods and claims were nonsense and not effective. The jest is obviously based on this alchemical point of view that everything that deviates from proper alchemy is not worth anything, or at least not as much.

Yes, "not worth a hoot" means it is worth nothing.

The one and only Philosophers' Stone has to transmute. There are many medicinal substances and drugs that can extend your life, but they have nothing to do with alchemy. A key feature that distinguishes the Elixir/Stone of alchemy from everything else is that it turns more than its own weight of base metals into silver or gold.

You need to prepare the right "Water" or solvent that will first radically dissolve and then coagulate itself with the right (metallic) "body" (or "bodies") into the Stone. This "ORMUS" stuff has nothing to do with alchemy.

An even older alchemical axiom: "If thy concoction transmuteth not, then yt is worthe a rot!" ;)

Peter Barnes
12-14-2015, 08:43 PM
Thanks JDP for clarifying this :)

I also do believe that traditional alchemy is the real alchemy, seeing as Ormus doesn't transmute base metals to Gold but aren't they similar? I mean if you make precipitate of Gold and then are able to ingest and has positive results isn't this the same as potable Gold, the methods of arriving at the Aurum potable are different but the end result is the same or roughly the same I think. But yes I agree the transmutation part isn't there from what I know.

HOW DOES ONE KNOW THE RIGHT PATH IN ALCHEMY IF NO-ONE HAS REACHED THE DESTINATION?

The thing is, how does one know which of the ancient texts to follow?, many of the texts are full of stumbling blocks and traps and so how does a person know if they are on the right track and which books teach the real method/s??

I did see a thread that goes into this and shows the books that others would recommend that are worthy of study, but then again you'd have to assume that the person telling you this has actually arrived at the philosophers stone themselves or at least the blessed elixir of life, if not then how can they advise which book/s are the real deal??

For example I think it was Adam Mclean who sold a PDF on how to deciphers alchemical texts or certain words and what they really meant, now I would have thought he really knows what he's talking about but in an interview on his site I think he was asked whether he had made the philosophers stone and he said no! And there have been others haven't there, Roger Caro's method nobody could repeat successfully, I read that even his own students couldn't but maybe that's down to secrecy, maybe it's all down to that :(

What advice would you give on which books to study that do show the way to the ultimate goals of an elixir of life and transmutational powder/substance? Or at least what are your thoughts in this subject, has there been anybody that has made the elixir/philosophers stone that you or the group know of?

In the books that I have read they do say something like this - the way to the elixir is to find a master who has reached this goal OR for God to grant you grace and somehow find the secret yourself (with God's help) I assume that most of us fall into the God's grace category, I did know a friend of the family who has been in the Masons (and head of it for a time) all of my life and I didn't know, only recently I found out and asked him about alchemy and the elixir of life and he honestly said he didn't know, he has dementia and surely if they knew someone would help him, I suppose these questions have been asked before, sorry for going over old questions but I wonder, unless you have a master who can teach you or via divine revelation then it seems you're on your own you're in deep water or shall I say mud, cause it's all as clear as mud to me :p


-------------------------------------------------

zoas23
12-15-2015, 09:33 AM
The alchemists were not very tolerant or patient with other people's views or methods. They constantly attacked the "sophists", "puffers", "multipliers", "vulgar chymists", etc. saying their methods and claims were nonsense and not effective.

This is almost off topic, but it is something I never understood:

Why the old alchemists used the idea of the "puffers" to attack the "bad alchemists" or the "fake alchemists"????

Those of us who have found a good puffer that understands what we want and is able to create it... and I am among the ones who have that luck... we love our "puffer" almost as much as we love our own families or pets...

LOL... Why the "puffers"???? Anyone knows the origin of this "metaphor"? (or maybe there's no metaphor and they really hated the literal puffers).

JDP
12-15-2015, 11:34 AM
This is almost off topic, but it is something I never understood:

Why the old alchemists used the idea of the "puffers" to attack the "bad alchemists" or the "fake alchemists"????

Those of us who have found a good puffer that understands what we want and is able to create it... and I am among the ones who have that luck... we love our "puffer" almost as much as we love our own families or pets...

LOL... Why the "puffers"???? Anyone knows the origin of this "metaphor"? (or maybe there's no metaphor and they really hated the literal puffers).

The "puffers" (the name makes allusion to their frequent use of bellows to make fires hotter) were the seekers after transmutation whom the alchemists dismissed as being hopelessly wrong in their methods and/or matters they worked with. The origin of these attacks are in ancient Alexandrian/Byzantine and medieval Arabic/Persian alchemical texts, where those who were judged to be mistaken were already scoffed at and criticized, but they weren't called "puffers" back then. They are referred to by such names as "sophists", or "fools", or "vulgar/common people". The word "puffer" to refer to these seekers came later, probably around the late Middle Ages or Early Modern times. Other medieval common names for them were "multipliers" (these were seekers who specialized in processes that were said to "double" or "triple" the amount of gold or silver employed, thus the name "multiplier") and "Geber's Cooks" (referring to those who interpreted too literally the processes described in the works that circulated under the name "Geber" since around the late 13th century). Later on still, this division and terminology ended up creating the "vulgar/common/ordinary chymistry" vs "secret/higher/philosophical chymistry" division during the 17th and 18th centuries. But by this time the majority of defenders of transmutation were not like the old alchemists, who basically denied any transmutation method that did not have to do with the Philosophers' Stone. These "chymists" who defended transmutation accepted a wide variety of ways to make artificial gold and silver. If you read the works of staunch defenders of the transmutation of metals like Kunckel or Becher, who themselves never claimed to have discovered how to make the Philosophers' Stone yet keep affirming that they have succeeded in achieving several transmutations by other methods (usually called "particulars" in those times), you won't fail to see how vastly different they are in their views and opinions from the majority of the alchemists. It is interesting to notice that, ironically, the alchemists from this point of view have more in common with modern chemists (who deny ALL transmutations whatsoever, short of having access to radioactive substances or atom smashers, which is sort of their version of the "Philosophers' Stone") than the supposedly more "modern" and "scientific" chymists of the 17th and 18th centuries, who actually were more open minded and did not deny that there were other methods to achieve transmutation than the Philosophers' Stone.

JDP
12-15-2015, 12:17 PM
Thanks JDP for clarifying this :)

I also do believe that traditional alchemy is the real alchemy, seeing as Ormus doesn't transmute base metals to Gold but aren't they similar? I mean if you make precipitate of Gold and then are able to ingest and has positive results isn't this the same as potable Gold, the methods of arriving at the Aurum potable are different but the end result is the same or roughly the same I think. But yes I agree the transmutation part isn't there from what I know.

HOW DOES ONE KNOW THE RIGHT PATH IN ALCHEMY IF NO-ONE HAS REACHED THE DESTINATION?

The thing is, how does one know which of the ancient texts to follow?, many of the texts are full of stumbling blocks and traps and so how does a person know if they are on the right track and which books teach the real method/s??

I did see a thread that goes into this and shows the books that others would recommend that are worthy of study, but then again you'd have to assume that the person telling you this has actually arrived at the philosophers stone themselves or at least the blessed elixir of life, if not then how can they advise which book/s are the real deal??

For example I think it was Adam Mclean who sold a PDF on how to deciphers alchemical texts or certain words and what they really meant, now I would have thought he really knows what he's talking about but in an interview on his site I think he was asked whether he had made the philosophers stone and he said no! And there have been others haven't there, Roger Caro's method nobody could repeat successfully, I read that even his own students couldn't but maybe that's down to secrecy, maybe it's all down to that :(

What advice would you give on which books to study that do show the way to the ultimate goals of an elixir of life and transmutational powder/substance? Or at least what are your thoughts in this subject, has there been anybody that has made the elixir/philosophers stone that you or the group know of?

In the books that I have read they do say something like this - the way to the elixir is to find a master who has reached this goal OR for God to grant you grace and somehow find the secret yourself (with God's help) I assume that most of us fall into the God's grace category, I did know a friend of the family who has been in the Masons (and head of it for a time) all of my life and I didn't know, only recently I found out and asked him about alchemy and the elixir of life and he honestly said he didn't know, he has dementia and surely if they knew someone would help him, I suppose these questions have been asked before, sorry for going over old questions but I wonder, unless you have a master who can teach you or via divine revelation then it seems you're on your own you're in deep water or shall I say mud, cause it's all as clear as mud to me :p


-------------------------------------------------

The processes involved in these "ORMUS" claims have hardly much to do with alchemy. They have some relation to some claims of old "chymistry", but even then it is rather superficial.

McLean never has claimed to have made it. In fact, he flatly does not believe that the Stone exists and can be prepared. His viewpoint and interest in alchemy is purely the one of a modern historian, particularly one centering around the history of art (that is McLean's main interest in alchemy, its iconography and imagery.)

You don't know for sure which authors were right or wrong until you actually manage to succeed in following their "clues" and make the Stone. Then you will truly know for sure who was right and who was wrong. Until that happens, get ready to have to deal with a world full of uncertainties and "what ifs". The only way out of it is through study + trial and error. There is no other way, short of having someone who has already discovered it let you "in" into the secret.

Don't pay too much attention to the whole "Divine revelation" or "Divine permission" thingy. If the alchemists themselves really believed in such boasts 100% they would have had no problem whatsoever in speaking very clearly, and since this all-powerful entity in the sky is there constantly watching to prevent the "wrong" kind of people from achieving the Stone there is nothing anyone could do about it. Even having the whole process clearly explained, the "wrong people" (a rather subjective term) without the "Divine permission" in question would keep on failing to carry it out, while the "right people" (yet another rather subjective term) with the said "Divine permission" would incredibly enough keep on succeeding by following the exact same prescribed process, and this while the entire world watches with amazement the inexplicable spectacle take place! Needless to say the whole claim is silly and can't withstand scrutiny. It is just a device the alchemists used to self-aggrandize their "art", give it a sort of quasi-religious flavor and impress the more gullible among the masses. If the Stone exists, then it is an empirical fact, and therefore just like any other empirical fact it can be replicated by anyone who knows how to carry it out. It is no different than something as simple in comparison as making a fire. There was a time when this was a "mystery" for early man. Once knowledge of how to replicate it became widespread everywhere, the "mystery" ceased and anyone could do it. Nature does not understand any such concepts as "right people" or "wrong people", it does not make any such discriminations, these are purely subjective points of view exclusive to human societies (and even then they may vary widely from one society to the next.) They have nothing to do with empirical facts.

Ghislain
06-19-2016, 10:12 AM
Logistical Note: Continued from HERE (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?4768-Kerkring-s-Menstruum&p=42614#post42614).
________________________________


Alchemy is not chemistry, in chemistry if you add one thing to another it always gives a specific compound. This is only the starting point for Alchemy, different outcomes for the same work are common.

Could it not be that Alchemy was the starting point for chemistry?

Perhaps Alchemy is Chemistry with applied Philosophy.

Ghislain

Axismundi000
06-19-2016, 10:41 AM
There is no doubt that the science of chemistry emerged directly from the Art of Alchemy, this is a well established and proven historical fact.

Discussions about the nature of Alchemy can become very broad. Perhaps the only thing I can offer about that at present is: Alchemy requires the method of science and the aim of religion ( a well known phrase).

JDP
06-19-2016, 10:56 AM
I think you are right about personal experimentation Michael Sternbach. Alchemy is not chemistry, in chemistry if you add one thing to another it always gives a specific compound. This is only the starting point for Alchemy, different outcomes for the same work are common.

If such a thing was true, the implications for the seeker would be devastating, because:

1- Alchemy would not be a science but would depend on some mysterious & apparently intelligent "something" which capriciously decides who succeeds and who does not, even for people performing the EXACT same operations

2- Even those who manage to make the Stone would live in perpetual fear that one day they will carry out the operations as usual but then NOTHING happens, no Stone is made!

It would then be a monumental waste of time and money to even bother seeking the secret in the first place. Even if you manage to find it, then "something" which is beyond your control can easily make you fail nonetheless. You would be at the mercy of this "something" that decides the outcome of the operations as it sees fit. I think I do not need to point out how implausible such a bizarre scenario would be, though. For example, you could easily prove to mankind that "something" (call it "God", or "Angels", or "Demons", or "Fate", or "The Tooth Fairy", or what you like) does in fact exist and is watching over us and controlling our destinies. Never mind the Stone, man; this is even more consequential! You would change mankind forever by showing that different people carrying out the exact same operations would end up with totally different results depending on this unknown "something" that regulates who succeeds and who doesn't out of His/Her/Its whim and fancy. Faith would no longer be needed. People would know for a fact that there indeed is "something" out there ruling their lives. "Kiss free will goodbye, folks, we are all really puppets of this unknown something! Here is the proof: ***follows recipe for the Stone in full detail and plain language so anyone can understand it*** Now watch carefully how some people totally fail and yet others strangely succeed by carrying out the exact same operations. The unknown something has decided who are the losers and who are the winners, and no one can do jack-squat about it no matter how hard they try!"

Axismundi000
06-19-2016, 12:21 PM
JDP I simply do not accept your assumptions numbered 1 and 2, this is my personal view and I do not seek to persuade anybody towards my view. Alchemy and Chemistry have clear differences in paradigm one is a science the other is not, the rest is an entirely personal quest. All I can offer is practical methodology which others can draw from and form their own opinion over. The rest is equivalent to biblical casuistry of the worst kind in my opinion.

JDP
06-19-2016, 12:24 PM
JDP I simply do not accept your assumptions numbered 1 and 2, this is my personal view and I do not seek to persuade anybody towards my view. Alchemy and Chemistry have clear differences in paradigm one is a science the other is not, the rest is an entirely personal quest. All I can offer is practical methodology which others can draw from and form their own opinion over. The rest is equivalent to biblical casuistry of the worst kind in my opinion.

They are not "assumptions" but the logical consequences of that claim.

Michael Sternbach
06-19-2016, 03:27 PM
Even in modern Chemistry, it is well known that an experiment can't always be repeated with equal success. Even all other conditions being identical, the time chosen and the sensitiveness of the person conducting it can make quite a difference regarding the outcome. This even applies to cooking, and it most certainly applies to alchemy, which is considered to be a spiritual science for good reasons.

But there is no external force of a moralistic nature deciding if the practitioner would be worthy of success or not. Of course, some astrological influences will be more supportive of certain operations, as many alchemists understood. But the most crucial factor is the psycho-spiritual influence of the practitioner themselves on the process in the laboratory. The internal and the external go hand in hand in alchemy.

JDP
06-19-2016, 04:01 PM
Even in modern Chemistry, it is well known that an experiment can't always be repeated with equal success. Even all other conditions being identical, the time chosen and the sensitiveness of the person conducting it can make quite a difference regarding the outcome. This even applies to cooking, and it most certainly applies to alchemy, which is considered to be a spiritual science for good reasons.

But there is no external force of a moralistic nature deciding if the practitioner would be worthy of success or not. Of course, some astrological influences will be more supportive of certain operations, as many alchemists understood. But the most crucial factor is the psycho-spiritual influence of the practitioner themselves on the process in the laboratory. The internal and the external go hand in hand in alchemy.

If such a thing supposedly happens in chemistry then I am afraid that all chemists must be quite unaware of it. It is one of the integral elements of science that experiments need to be repeatable in order to be accepted as factual. Cases where an experimenter has made a claim and none of his colleagues have been able to replicate it are either dismissed or in other cases proven to be errors made by the claimant. For something to be considered "science" it is imperative that anyone can carry it out and confirm it. Science is very "egalitarian" in that sense.

The supposed "psycho-spiritual influence of the practitioner" is a purely speculative claim, no one has ever proven such a thing exists. I could sit all day long for the next thousand years -if I could live that long- in front of a 2 liter bottle desperately wishing and concentrating real hard that by mixing Coca Cola and Mentos in it I will obtain a 20 feet tall "Geyser" of pure gold bubbles, but rest assured that no amount of "psycho-spiritual" efforts will make it happen and the result will always be a "Geyser" of Cola bubbles. We must distinguish between EMPIRICAL FACTS and WISHFUL THINKING. Empirical facts stand alone and just "are", no matter what you think or wish of them. If alchemy is a fact, then it will fit this elemental principle of science. Anyone should be able to achieve it, provided he/she can first successfully get through the labyrinth of obstacles that the alchemists have put in front of it to make it more difficult to achieve the goal.

Michael Sternbach
06-19-2016, 05:57 PM
If such a thing supposedly happens in chemistry then I am afraid that all chemists must be quite unaware of it. It is one of the integral elements of science that experiments need to be repeatable in order to be accepted as factual. Cases where an experimenter has made a claim and none of his colleagues have been able to replicate it are either dismissed or in other cases proven to be errors made by the claimant. For something to be considered "science" it is imperative that anyone can carry it out and confirm it. Science is very "egalitarian" in that sense.

But this is not what is happening in practice. I think anybody working in a chemical laboratory knows this. Of course, as it is quite impossible to keep track of all the environmental influences that could hypothetically modify the outcome of an experiment, I suppose that any variations may be rationalized to have an unidentified physical source (supposed impurities, differences in air pressure etc).

I personally know somebody who was manufacturing pharmaceutics in a big company's lab. His syntheses were reputed to be particularly productive. Besides paying particular attention to what was happening inside the flasks, he was taking the phases of the moon into account - something that orthodox science would consider totally irrelevant.


The supposed "psycho-spiritual influence of the practitioner" is a purely speculative claim, no one has ever proven such a thing exists. I could sit all day long for the next thousand years -if I could live that long- in front of a 2 liter bottle desperately wishing and concentrating real hard that by mixing Coca Cola and Mentos in it I will obtain a 20 feet tall "Geyser" of pure gold bubbles, but rest assured that no amount of "psycho-spiritual" efforts will make it happen and the result will always be a "Geyser" of Cola bubbles.

That is certainly true. For yur choice of words gives away your inexperience in the application of psychic energies. "Desperately wishing" and "concentrating real hard" are sure ways of impeding them from taking effect!

For those very advanced in using subtle forces for altering physical reality, it may indeed be possible to transmute one kind of matter into a very different kind by mental means alone. But I was actually talking about processes of a more subtle nature.


We must distinguish between EMPIRICAL FACTS and WISHFUL THINKING. Empirical facts stand alone and just "are", no matter what you think or wish of them. If alchemy is a fact, then it will fit this elemental principle of science. Anyone should be able to achieve it, provided he/she can first successfully get through the labyrinth of obstacles that the alchemists have put in front of it to make it more difficult to achieve the goal.

Those obstacles have not always been put there intentionally. Often, they are simply due to the difficulty to convey multi-dimensional concepts in unambigious, linear language. That's why it is said that, in many cases, alchemical imagery is more straightforward than written explanations.

I hate to break it to you, but your definition of science is mechanistic and essentially belongs to the 19th century. In the last century, scientists in various areas, especially in quantum physics, started understanding that the consciousness of the conductor of an experiment can influence its outcome. What we are presently observing is just the rudimentary stages of a development that should lead to a full appreciation of how mind influences matter eventually. This can be called conditioning of space-time in the language of modern science, or etheric influence in Hermetic parlance.

Alchemy is not a materialistic science but exists at the interface of matter and mind.

JDP
06-19-2016, 09:39 PM
But this is not what is happening in practice. I think anybody working in a chemical laboratory knows this. Of course, as it is quite impossible to keep track of all the environmental influences that could hypothetically modify the outcome of an experiment, I suppose that any variations may be rationalized to have an unidentified physical source (supposed impurities, differences in air pressure etc).

I personally know somebody who was manufacturing pharmaceutics in a big company's lab. His syntheses were reputed to be particularly productive. Besides paying particular attention to what was happening inside the flasks, he was taking the phases of the moon into account - something that orthodox science would consider totally irrelevant.

If such influences are real, they can be discovered and taken account of, thus science would not have a problem accepting them, since once they are known and acknowledged to be a factor that plays a role in the outcome the same principle still stands: anyone can replicate them. They are proven to be facts now. But from this to trying to conclude that this must mean that results will vary because of some "psycho-spiritual influence of the practitioner" is a far stretch. Such "unknown" phenomenons that might affect the results of a given experiment are still not the subject of capricious and arbitrary changes by the will of the experimenter but things which cannot be altered and will work the same for everyone.


That is certainly true. For yur choice of words gives away your inexperience in the application of psychic energies. "Desperately wishing" and "concentrating real hard" are sure ways of impeding them from taking effect!

For those very advanced in using subtle forces for altering physical reality, it may indeed be possible to transmute one kind of matter into a very different kind by mental means alone. But I was actually talking about processes of a more subtle nature.

The fact that you speak of "applications of psychic energy" as if such things were something really proven to exist and even practiced by some already tells me of your inexperience in the real world.

Also, if these alleged "psychic energies" work by not wishing or concentrating on the objective at hand, they would be almost as useless as if they would not exist at all. The point of the whole discussion is that such things supposedly work by the WILL of the operator, not casually and capriciously for who-knows what reason that is beyond control of the person with these alleged mental talents! If this was the case, the gifted would-be Jedi Knight would find himself submerged in total uncertainty as to when and how his super-mental abilities will come into work. He might spend his whole life in fruitless experiments and never get one single of the desired results, or he might just get "lucky" and it will happen the first time he tries, but then again it might just never happen again, and so on. In such a case, this "gift" would be nearly as useless for the possessor of it as for those who don't have it.


Those obstacles have not always been put there intentionally. Often, they are simply due to the difficulty to convey multi-dimensional concepts in unambigious, linear language. That's why it is said that, in many cases, alchemical imagery is more straightforward than written explanations.

All of the obstacles in alchemy are the willful and purposeful doing of the alchemists themselves. These guys were very well aware of what they were doing.

Interpretation of alchemical imagery, without any hints or explanations of the author's actual intended meaning, is totally subjective and therefore hardly more straightforward than written explanations. It is the product of the person who designed the imagery and the arbitrary meaning he gave to it. If you are not privy to these detail, you might as well be playing the lottery and hope to hit the jackpot by sheer luck, because your guess will be as good as that of anyone else's until the day you manage to experimentally prove that your interpretation of the imagery was indeed the correct one.


I hate to break it to you, but your definition of science is mechanistic and essentially belongs to the 19th century. In the last century, scientists in various areas, especially in quantum physics, started understanding that the consciousness of the conductor of an experiment can influence its outcome. What we are presently observing is just the rudimentary stages of a development that should lead to a full appreciation of how mind influences matter eventually. This can be called conditioning of space-time in the language of modern science, or etheric influence in Hermetic parlance.

Alchemy is not a materialistic science but exists at the interface of matter and mind.

I hate to break it to you, but unfortunately a lot of speculation has crept in into modern science as well, and some of the tenants of quantum physics are a good example of this. I am not any more or any less convinced by them than I am by the theoretical speculations about "sulphurs" and "mercuries" of the alchemists themselves, or the theoretical "explanations" of gravity by any given philosopher or scientist through the centuries, just to mention a couple of other examples. I am convinced by empirical facts, nothing else.

Alchemy is and always was a material experimental science. Do not confuse the philosophical and religious speculations of the alchemists with the empirical facts that they managed to discover. They are two very different things. One might very well say, as with most of the discoveries of other sciences, that the empirical facts of alchemy were discovered DESPITE the theoretical speculations of the alchemists rather than because of them.

Axismundi000
06-20-2016, 09:55 AM
..................
Alchemy is and always was a material experimental science. Do not confuse the philosophical and religious speculations of the alchemists with the empirical facts that they managed to discover. They are two very different things. One might very well say, as with most of the discoveries of other sciences, that the empirical facts of alchemy were discovered DESPITE the theoretical speculations of the alchemists rather than because of them.

For brevity I quote the last paragraph.

Alchemy was and is not a purely material experimental science. Rather this is the explanation employed by the discipline of Chemistry to explain how it historically emerged from Alchemy. Many Alchemists were also Ritual Magicians and Mystics and the mixture of mysticism, magic and practical experimentation can be clearly shown in historical texts and recorded lives of past Alchemists.

Your assertions above are only true from the viewpoint of Chemistry and its explanation for the genesis of the scientific discipline of Chemistry. In other words this is what chemistry says about Alchemy, it is not what Alchemy says about itself.
The essential fallacy that you repeatedly propagate JDP is that Alchemy=Chemistry, it does not. The modern empirical science of Chemistry is a completely different paradigm to Alchemy. I do not seek to persuade anyone to my viewpoint, however obvious inaccuracies and fallacies should be identified.

Michael Sternbach
06-20-2016, 11:59 AM
If such influences are real, they can be discovered and taken account of, thus science would not have a problem accepting them, since once they are known and acknowledged to be a factor that plays a role in the outcome the same principle still stands: anyone can replicate them. They are proven to be facts now.

No, people generally only see and measure what they are open and ready to.


But from this to trying to conclude that this must mean that results will vary because of some "psycho-spiritual influence of the practitioner" is a far stretch. Such "unknown" phenomenons that might affect the results of a given experiment are still not the subject of capricious and arbitrary changes by the will of the experimenter but things which cannot be altered and will work the same for everyone.

You are free to have your opinion, of course. It seems like every spiritually minded forum ought to have its nay sayer.


The fact that you speak of "applications of psychic energy" as if such things were something really proven to exist and even practiced by some already tells me of your inexperience in the real world.

LOL They were proven many times in my personal experience. But since all anecdotes I could offer would likely be considered irrelevant by you, I won't bother.


Also, if these alleged "psychic energies" work by not wishing or concentrating on the objective at hand, they would be almost as useless as if they would not exist at all. The point of the whole discussion is that such things supposedly work by the WILL of the operator, not casually and capriciously for who-knows what reason that is beyond control of the person with these alleged mental talents! If this was the case, the gifted would-be Jedi Knight would find himself submerged in total uncertainty as to when and how his super-mental abilities will come into work. He might spend his whole life in fruitless experiments and never get one single of the desired results, or he might just get "lucky" and it will happen the first time he tries, but then again it might just never happen again, and so on. In such a case, this "gift" would be nearly as useless for the possessor of it as for those who don't have it.

I did not say that psychic energies can't be used in line with one's will. But the state of mind that facilitates this is far from "desparately wishing" and "trying real hard."


All of the obstacles in alchemy are the willful and purposeful doing of the alchemists themselves. These guys were very well aware of what they were doing.

I did not say that they didn't know what they were doing. It's just sometimes very hard to talk to somebody about something they don't have personal experience with. My previous paragraph is a good example.


Interpretation of alchemical imagery, without any hints or explanations of the author's actual intended meaning, is totally subjective and therefore hardly more straightforward than written explanations. It is the product of the person who designed the imagery and the arbitrary meaning he gave to it.

The meanings are not arbitrary, even though they were often used in rather specialized ways by the alchemists. Symbols belong to mankind's collective unconscious. Jung first discovered this by finding symbols from his patients' dreams in alchemical books.


If you are not privy to these detail, you might as well be playing the lottery and hope to hit the jackpot by sheer luck,

If you know a better way to hit the jackpot, let me know, please.


because your guess will be as good as that of anyone else's until the day you manage to experimentally prove that your interpretation of the imagery was indeed the correct one.

The prove of the pudding always lies in eating it.


I hate to break it to you, but unfortunately a lot of speculation has crept in into modern science as well, and some of the tenants of quantum physics are a good example of this. I am not any more or any less convinced by them than I am by the theoretical speculations about "sulphurs" and "mercuries" of the alchemists themselves, or the theoretical "explanations" of gravity by any given philosopher or scientist through the centuries, just to mention a couple of other examples. I am convinced by empirical facts, nothing else.

We don't see directly what is inside the black box, so we have to create theories in order to make sense of observed data to the best of our ability at any given stage of the process.


Alchemy is and always was a material experimental science. Do not confuse the philosophical and religious speculations of the alchemists with the empirical facts that they managed to discover. They are two very different things. One might very well say, as with most of the discoveries of other sciences, that the empirical facts of alchemy were discovered DESPITE the theoretical speculations of the alchemists rather than because of them.

See my last paragraph.

JDP
06-20-2016, 04:33 PM
For brevity I quote the last paragraph.

Alchemy was and is not a purely material experimental science. Rather this is the explanation employed by the discipline of Chemistry to explain how it historically emerged from Alchemy. Many Alchemists were also Ritual Magicians and Mystics and the mixture of mysticism, magic and practical experimentation can be clearly shown in historical texts and recorded lives of past Alchemists.

Such as who? The romanticized "spiritualist" 19th century views of alchemy that you seem to propagate were already shattered by A.E. Waite (who was an "occultist" himself, BTW, not a chemist) after he made a pretty comprehensive survey of alchemical literature, going all the way back to the surviving Greek texts all the way to Early Modern times, only to be further pounded to the ground by subsequent scholars and historians (like Principe and Newman, for example.)


Your assertions above are only true from the viewpoint of Chemistry and its explanation for the genesis of the scientific discipline of Chemistry. In other words this is what chemistry says about Alchemy, it is not what Alchemy says about itself.
The essential fallacy that you repeatedly propagate JDP is that Alchemy=Chemistry, it does not. The modern empirical science of Chemistry is a completely different paradigm to Alchemy. I do not seek to persuade anyone to my viewpoint, however obvious inaccuracies and fallacies should be identified.

You don't seem to understand that I am not saying that alchemy and chemistry are one and the same thing. But both of them are obviously grounded on empirical facts. Alchemy has its goals and the materials and modus operandi to achieve them, and so does chemistry. The fact that both of them revolve around manipulations of substances does not mean they are exactly the same. I even make a distinction between "chymistry" and "chemistry", for crying out loud! One only has to examine all the conflicts between the alchemists & 17th-18th century transmutational "chymists" (think of the likes of Glauber, Becher or Kunckel, who were not really "alchemists" but still staunchly defended the reality of transmutation) against the "vulgar chymists" to realize that these "sects" did not quite see eye to eye with each other and did not consider themselves as "colleagues". Modern chemistry descends from that "vulgar chymistry" that started to stubbornly deny that transmutation was possible based on the empirical facts known to it, but ignoring or even outright denying the empirical facts known to the alchemists and transmutational chymists.

Michael Sternbach
06-20-2016, 04:56 PM
Such as who? The romanticized "spiritualist" 19th century views of alchemy that you seem to propagate were already shattered by A.E. Waite (who was an "occultist" himself, BTW, not a chemist) after he made a pretty comprehensive survey of alchemical literature, going all the way back to the surviving Greek texts all the way to Early Modern times, only to be further pounded to the ground by subsequent scholars and historians (like Principe and Newman, for example.)

Off the top of my head: Zosimos, Emerald Tablet, Jabir, Ullmann, Roger Bacon, Paracelsus, Edward Kelly, Thomas Vaughn, Isaac Newton, Jacob Saulat.

With Raymond Lull, Arnald of Villanova, and Albert the Great, ascribing alchemical writings to them is considered spurious by modern scholars, however, this authorship was taken for granted during centuries, which reinforces the close relationship between alchemy and magic/mysticism. If any reinforcement is actually still needed.

It is by no means a child of 19th century mysticism!

JDP
06-20-2016, 05:13 PM
No, people generally only see and measure what they are open and ready to.

Tell that to the countless people who throughout history made discoveries purely by chance or accident They certainly were not expecting to stumble upon such things so they were not "open and ready" to see and measure them.


You are free to have your opinion, of course. It seems like every spiritually minded forum ought to have its nay sayer.

More like every forum needs to have its share of realists and empiricists to balance things and keep them grounded on reality.


LOL They were proven many times in my personal experience. But since all anecdotes I could offer would likely be considered irrelevant by you, I won't bother.

As you very well imply yourself, this would just be anecdotal evidence. Sure, it is interesting and so, but it just can't prove anything. It would just be your word against that of others.


I did not say that psychic energies can't be used in line with one's will. But the state of mind that facilitates this is far from "desparately wishing" and "trying real hard."

Um, OK, so don't "desperately wish" or "try real hard", simply "want" for the Mentos + Coke mixture to give a "geyser" of pure gold bubbles. Let us know when you succeed. I won't hold my breath, though, as I strongly suspect that even if you lived 1000 years it just ain't going to happen, whether you concentrate "real hard" or not won't make the slightest difference. The Mentos and Coke are going to be quite indifferent to your will & wishes and will continue to be what they are and give the byproducts of their interaction with each other, as always.


I did not say that they didn't know what they were doing. It's just sometimes very hard to talk to somebody about something they don't have personal experience with. My previous paragraph is a good example.

The meanings are not arbitrary, even though they were often used in rather specialized ways by the alchemists. Symbols belong to mankind's collective unconscious. Jung first discovered this by finding symbols from his patients' dreams in alchemical books.

Jung's speculations on alchemy have been debunked several times already.


If you know a better way to hit the jackpot, let me know, please.

How about by "wanting" to win it? According to your strange beliefs, it should be possible to do it that way. Good luck! Las Vegas is waiting for you to make you the new millionaire on the block.


The prove of the pudding always lies in eating it.

Yes, but you must first mix it and cook it, then you can eat it. When you can mix & cook that "pudding" by simply interpreting the imagery, and then "eating it", do let us know. Until then, your interpretation of the imagery is about as good as anyone else's.


We don't see directly what is inside the black box, so we have to create theories in order to make sense of observed data to the best of our ability at any given stage of the process.


See my last paragraph.

Indeed, and that is why they always remain "theories", and are thus always subject to change or even discardment. Empirical facts, on the other hand, never change and remain constant forever. The gravity we observe today, for example, is the exact same one that has been observed by countless people throughout history, and which some have sought to "explain", but all these theories and speculations seeking to "explain" the observed phenomenon are now relegated to the pages of history and no longer considered satisfactory, yet gravity still is around, quite unaffected by how we seek to "explain" it. It doesn't care what we think of it, it just "is". Now apply the same to the Philosophers' Stone.

JDP
06-20-2016, 05:24 PM
Off the top of my head: Zosimos, Emerald Tablet, Jabir, Ullmann, Roger Bacon, Paracelsus, Edward Kelly, Thomas Vaughn, Isaac Newton, Jacob Saulat.

With Raymond Lull, Arnald of Villanova, and Albert the Great, ascribing alchemical writings to them is considered spurious by modern scholars, however, this authorship was taken for granted during centuries, which reinforces the close relationship between alchemy and magic/mysticism. If any reinforcement is actually still needed.

It is by no means a child of 19th century mysticism!

But you are confusing the philosophical and religious beliefs of such people with what they actually were doing in their labs. Like I said, they are two very different things. We are confronted once again with facts vs theories/speculation. Many people from past centuries who practiced other disciplines, like medicine or mathematics, also had "mystical" beliefs, yet that does not mean that medicine and math are "mystical" or "magical" or that they really have a close relationship with magic/mysticism.

It is a 19th century romanticized misinterpretation of the subject. As even Waite showed, the bulk of alchemical literature is almost wholly concerned with manipulations of substances, and hardly anywhere in the old literature do we see any claim that the secret depends on some sort of "psychic" or "spiritual" force by the alchemist himself. If that was really the case, by the way, then what would be the point of so much secrecy and misleads in alchemy? You could describe the entire process very clearly, and only those who have the "gift" of affecting the outcome of the reactions with their "psychic/spiritual forces" would succeed, the rest would fail. Alchemy would self-protect itself from the "unworthy" and would have no need whatsoever for so many decknamen, allegories, riddles, mysteries, strange imagery, etc.

z0 K
06-20-2016, 05:38 PM
Other threads have converged here so my comments are responses combined from what would have gone to the other thread topics. My comments are my opinions based on experience in my labs.

Of course the Emerald Tablet is a prosaic demonstration of the Whole Work complete from the paradox of One ending in the multitude of things Perfected. As such, inspiriting personal meaning can be obtained from it by most anyone looking for inspiration. It is simultaneously a guide to the inner work and the outer work.

Since this is about the outer work I will explain “what are these “Sun” and “Moon” based on what I have seen in my own lab. For symbolic reference we start with the Sun: father, yellow, gold, red king, and sulfur, will suffice; Moon: mother, silver, white queen, mercury.

The Earth is the fixed salt body.

One Thing is Creation. Born from sulfur and mercury the belly of the Wind carries it the Spiritus Mundi.

You have to know the Spirit manifesting creation in the matter in your lab. If you do not see the Spirit in it you are not in a position to make Medicine from it as Valentine said.

Adepts know that Spirit, and that gives them license to use double entendre. For the work is literally One thing in one vessel with one fire, in the beginning.

The sages seemingly all conclusive and vague descriptions of the first matter is an inside joke to the initiated in the Work. I myself have advised on many occasions to distill any herb and catch everything that rises, then purify. It ascends and descends in the regime of fire the many useful and philosophical products of that destructive recreation of one thing.

If anyone were to do that and pay attention to what is seen in the work you will find the Spirit, you will find the sulfur, you will find the mercury, and you will find the salt body: all obtained from one thing – the herb you started with. Many things from one thing all in one vessel; one end is cooler than the other. That’s physics.

Those Elements make the stone for the healing of man that can be had for little expense at getting starting matter. Lab equipment is another story:-) Much time at tedious operations is required.

People fall into a worse trap in these days than the "one matter" double entendre of the adepts. People have become convinced that the Sulfur, Mercury and Spirit of metals are to be found in the ore from the mines. This is an absurd conclusion not substantiated by lab experiments. People are still today attempting to get philosophical (alchemical) Mercury from Hg though the adepts scoffed at that notion.

Those who rely heavily on cynicism and skepticism to hone their logic will probably not be able to recognize the Spirit in the bottle.

Once one has the Elements purified then one may try to move the Spirit into the fixed earth to make Medicine. The Spirit has to be purified of feces also. That requires delicate artistry.

I once worked with a PhD chemist who was all thumbs in the lab and could not pull off most any operation without a screw up. Yet he was the person to call for solving problems of theory when the actual lab results were outside the box.

Hardly anyone believes what I have written here and elsewhere about this. After all the herbal or plant work is inferior to the “great work” with metals, isn’t it? So folks dissolve metals in acids distill and sublimate until death overcomes the confusion.

That confusion being the notion that metals or the mineral ores they are obtained from possess alchemical mercury and sulfur. That is a cruel joke of the Rosicrucians which they all believe nowadays. So the joke is on them:-)

I could say more when someone produces labwork in the simple direction I’ve indicated above.

______________________________________________

Logistical Note: Continued here: Kerkring's Menstruum (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?4768-Kerkring-s-Menstruum&p=42670#post42670).


----------------------------------------------

Andro
06-20-2016, 06:01 PM
Other threads have converged here so my comments are responses combined from what would have gone to the other thread topics.

Hi z0 K & Everyone,

Significantly off-topic developments from various other threads (including Kerkring's Menstruum (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?4768-Kerkring-s-Menstruum&p=42670#post42670)) have been moved to this thread here (which is more 'general' in nature), so as not to derail the original topics of the respective threads.

Axismundi000
06-20-2016, 09:28 PM
Such as who? The romanticized "spiritualist" 19th century views of alchemy that you seem to propagate were already shattered by A.E. Waite (who was an "occultist" himself, BTW, not a chemist) after he made a pretty comprehensive survey of alchemical literature, going all the way back to the surviving Greek texts all the way to Early Modern times, only to be further pounded to the ground by subsequent scholars and historians (like Principe and Newman, for example.)



You don't seem to understand that I am not saying that alchemy and chemistry are one and the same thing. But both of them are obviously grounded on empirical facts. Alchemy has its goals and the materials and modus operandi to achieve them, and so does chemistry. The fact that both of them revolve around manipulations of substances does not mean they are exactly the same. I even make a distinction between "chymistry" and "chemistry", for crying out loud! One only has to examine all the conflicts between the alchemists & 17th-18th century transmutational "chymists" (think of the likes of Glauber, Becher or Kunckel, who were not really "alchemists" but still staunchly defended the reality of transmutation) against the "vulgar chymists" to realize that these "sects" did not quite see eye to eye with each other and did not consider themselves as "colleagues". Modern chemistry descends from that "vulgar chymistry" that started to stubbornly deny that transmutation was possible based on the empirical facts known to it, but ignoring or even outright denying the empirical facts known to the alchemists and transmutational chymists.

You ask who has written about Alchemy as well as magic and mysticism. After about 5 seconds thought Paracelsus springs to mind.

http://english.grimoar.cz/?Loc=key&Lng=2&Words=53&New=78

Check out: Of the supreme mysteries (1655 scan), contents include talismans, alchemical oils, astrology.

Also JDP you have been clearly asserting that Alchemy and Chemistry are the same by arguing that the chemical discoveries obtained by alchemists are despite the various spiritual viewpoints that the Alchemists had, and that it is these chemical discoveries only that are relevant. Also I have to say that it is not clear that Alchemy is purely grounded in empirical fact, of the two only the science of chemistry is. Do I really need to trawl my book collection to find more historical figures?, what about John French's Art of Distillation? Highly regarded by Boyle but also Translated Cornelius Agrippa. There is too much evidence against you JDP. I am prepared to keep hitting you over the head with facts until you give up trying to deny that historically many Alchemists were also actively interested in magic and mysticism. From this fact it readily follows that Alchemy is different to Chemistry and has different objectives which means your whole argument is complete fallacy JDP. I accept however that this is the perspective of the scientific, empirical chemist about the provenance and Genesis of chemistry as a science.

JDP
06-21-2016, 07:38 AM
You ask who has written about Alchemy as well as magic and mysticism. After about 5 seconds thought Paracelsus springs to mind.

http://english.grimoar.cz/?Loc=key&Lng=2&Words=53&New=78

Check out: Of the supreme mysteries (1655 scan), contents include talismans, alchemical oils, astrology.

Also JDP you have been clearly asserting that Alchemy and Chemistry are the same by arguing that the chemical discoveries obtained by alchemists are despite the various spiritual viewpoints that the Alchemists had, and that it is these chemical discoveries only that are relevant. Also I have to say that it is not clear that Alchemy is purely grounded in empirical fact, of the two only the science of chemistry is. Do I really need to trawl my book collection to find more historical figures?, what about John French's Art of Distillation? Highly regarded by Boyle but also Translated Cornelius Agrippa. There is too much evidence against you JDP. I am prepared to keep hitting you over the head with facts until you give up trying to deny that historically many Alchemists were also actively interested in magic and mysticism. From this fact it readily follows that Alchemy is different to Chemistry and has different objectives which means your whole argument is complete fallacy JDP. I accept however that this is the perspective of the scientific, empirical chemist about the provenance and Genesis of chemistry as a science.

Read post #235, where I already addressed this type of fallacious argument. If we go by this "logic" then physics must also be a "mystical/magical" science, since one of its most important figures, Isaac Newton, firmly believed in strange uncorroborated ideas like "prisca sapientia". We must not be confused by the fact that in past centuries people, even the great scientists, were more prone to harbor strange beliefs for which they nevertheless had no shred of proof. But there is a huge difference between alchemy, which has always purported to be based on empirical facts, and whatever other philosophical and religious beliefs its practitioners may have had. When these people wrote about alchemy they usually left aside such beliefs out of the topic at hand. The only type of religious/mystical belief that often shows up in alchemy is the idea that alchemy is a "Divine gift", but this is purely dogma and rhetoric from those more religious past ages. I think that it was in this thread, many posts ago, that I also addressed this "Divine Gift" or "Divine Permission" claim, which does not withstand scrutiny either. Curiously -and very tellingly- enough, the alchemists who most boast about this are some of the most obscure and vague in style, which makes you wonder why would they go through such trouble to try to hide the subject? If alchemy really depends on some sort "Divine Permit" and without it you would never succeed no matter what you do, then they simply could write the whole process clearly and let this "Divine Permit" do its thingy and separate the "worthy" from the "unworthy". But rest assured that not even the alchemists who made such boasts believed them even for a second. The fact that they kept on writing in enigmatic/obscure/vague styles already shows they did not believe their own hype.

Paracelsus had many spurious texts attributed to him. In one of his authentic works, however, he openly admits he has not prepared the Stone. So I have plenty of doubts that Paracelsus could even properly qualify as an "alchemist" to begin with. He seems more like a doctor interested in these subjects and in applying the lab techniques of alchemists and chymists to the preparation of medicines.

And John French was even less of an "alchemist". There is hardly anything "alchemical" in his "Art of Distillation". It's just a spagyrical text. Someone like John French would have been quickly labelled a "vulgar chymist" by the alchemists.

I have never said that alchemy and chemistry are the same thing, that is your assumption since you seem to be under the mistaken impression that without calling for "supernatural" things into play everything having to do with manipulating substances must be "chemistry". For centuries we can see a veritable battle between "vulgar chymists" and alchemists and the chymists (like Kunckel, Becher, Creiling, etc.) who also defended the reality of transmutation. So the separation between these disciplines has a solid historical background, and it has nothing to do with "psychic/spiritual forces", which, I repeat, is a modern concept from 19th century spiritualism/occultism forced upon alchemy. You should read A.E. Waite's "The Secret Tradition in Alchemy". It did not take a modern chemist or academic historian to first debunk these romanticized modern interpretations of alchemy by taking a closer and more comprehensive look at the literature of this subject, but in fact one of the smarter and better educated "occultists" of the late 19th & early 20th century.

Alchemy and chemistry are obviously not the same, but not for the reasons that you think. It all has to do with empirical facts and lab techniques. Chemistry knows its share of them, but since it knows none that produce a transmutation of any metal into another one chemists simply assume that transmutation by means of reactions between substances is impossible and brand alchemy a "dream" at best, and then they, often borrowing from the theories of physics (like the alleged strong forces keeping the subatomic particles together not being affected by "chemical" reactions), come up with supposed "explanations" as to why this is not possible. Alchemy and transmutational chymistry, in their turn, know their own share of empirical facts and lab techniques, but unlike those known to the chemists, these do produce radical changes in metals, which then the alchemist/transmutational-chymist come up with their own set of theoretical "explanations" as to why this is so. There is no need to seek for bizarre and outlandish "explanations" here. Chemistry ignores or overlooks certain empirical facts and techniques that alchemy and transmutational chymistry did not. That is the real difference, not some weird and mysterious Jedi Knight-like super-mental/psychic power. Rest assured that if you taught the chemists the proper empirical operations, they too could repeat them all on their own and see for themselves the reality of the subject. Jedi Knights are not needed for alchemy/transmutation to be real.

Axismundi000
06-21-2016, 12:41 PM
JDP it is irrelevant whether or not you think these religious and mystical ideas should be a part of Alchemy, the fact is they have been and are. You dismiss Paracelsus ( the father of medicine ) and suggest the he didn't write Archodoxes of Magic. John French you discount because his book is mainly Spagyric and then suggest these practices of magic, astrology and mysticism were strange beliefs that Alchemy dispensed with. Alchemy has not dispensed with these things Chemistry has.

Perhaps you would like to also dismiss The Golden Chain Of Homer - Kirchweger, it provides a diagram at the beginning identifying various non-material realms and how these have a relationship to the material level, only by understanding this overall scheme does the Alchemical theory and practices in this work make sense. Your assertion that Alchemy does not consider anything but material results is simply not true. I shall look forward to you regularly dismissing each Alchemical work as being in some way spurious or the historical personage not genuine as I gradually present them all to you.

If you think that Alchemy is purely material oriented and that you will find a way to transmute based on this materialist empirical approach, may I wish you every success in your endeavour JDP.

JDP
06-21-2016, 06:14 PM
JDP it is irrelevant whether or not you think these religious and mystical ideas should be a part of Alchemy, the fact is they have been and are. You dismiss Paracelsus ( the father of medicine ) and suggest the he didn't write Archodoxes of Magic. John French you discount because his book is mainly Spagyric and then suggest these practices of magic, astrology and mysticism were strange beliefs that Alchemy dispensed with. Alchemy has not dispensed with these things Chemistry has.

Medicine existed long before Paracelsus, plus in his genuine works he does not seem to ever claim to have made the Stone. In fact, he sometimes shuns transmutation and says the real goal of alchemy should be preparing medicines. Like I said, Paracelsus sounds a heck of a lot like a doctor interested in the subject, but not an actual "alchemist".

John French was an spagyrist, not an alchemist, I stand by this firmly as well.

The bulk of alchemical literature is quite unconcerned with magic. The "natural magic" that some texts speak of is in fact quite a different thing than what most people understand by "magic", so this does not count. Some of the very few works where alchemy and magical practices seem to be intertwined is in the texts attributed to al-Majriti (the Rutbat al-Hakim and the Ghayat al-Hakim), which author considered alchemy to be related to sorcery (see Ibn Khaldun's comments regarding this. He also thought that alchemy and sorcery were related, but unlike al-Majriti, he certainly was no "alchemist". It is usually non-alchemists like Ibn Khaldun or al-Biruni who had these strange and unusual concepts about alchemy being some sort of "sorcery", not the alchemists themselves, who almost always saw their work as part of nature and its processes, not something that depends on any alleged power of the will of the operator.)

Regarding astrology, its only link with alchemy is the alleged planetary influences that supposedly play a part in the generation of metals in nature. And even this was not a crucial factor, as the Latin Geber explains, since the operator does not need to know this, nature does its work all on its own, including such alleged planetary influences, so the alchemist has no control of such things, and since nature is always at work, he does not need to know them.


Perhaps you would like to also dismiss The Golden Chain Of Homer - Kirchweger, it provides a diagram at the beginning identifying various non-material realms and how these have a relationship to the material level, only by understanding this overall scheme does the Alchemical theory and practices in this work make sense.

There is a lot of nonsense and bogus claims in that text. But don't worry, it is not a unique feature of that text only. Even chymists like Kunckel or Becher crammed their works with all sorts of lies and nonsense when it comes to transmutation, but fortunately every now and then they also dropped some great experimental truths in the midst of this chaos of lies and baloney processes. It was a very common literary device used by both alchemists and chymists to make it more difficult to discover the truth (unlike modern scientists, these guys were not very egalitarian and wanted their discoveries only to be known by what they considered people worthy of knowing such things.) And the only way out of this labyrinth is, much to your dislike, I suspect, through sheer empiricism. There is no other way than trial & error to get at the truth of alchemy & transmutational chymistry.


Your assertion that Alchemy does not consider anything but material results is simply not true. I shall look forward to you regularly dismissing each Alchemical work as being in some way spurious or the historical personage not genuine as I gradually present them all to you.

What the alchemists believed and theorized is one thing, the actual empirical facts another very different one. Same thing for modern science, by the way. I am not picking on alchemy alone when it comes to this. A distinction between theories/speculations and actual empirical facts has to always be made. The first seek to "explain" the latter, while the latter stand by themselves, with or without intended "explanations", they just "are", they neither care nor are affected at all by what we think of them.


If you think that Alchemy is purely material oriented and that you will find a way to transmute based on this materialist empirical approach, may I wish you every success in your endeavour JDP.

If you think that alchemy is not an empirical science that relies on the appropriate manipulation of some substances and that instead it depends on mysterious "psychic/spiritual" forces emanating from the operator himself, which no one has been able to prove that they even really exist in the first place, may I wish you lots of luck in your endeavor, Axismundi000, because you will need it. Word of advice: first make sure, and I mean for real, through actual empirical experiments, not just because you wish it was true, that such "psychic/spiritual" forces emanating from the operator really exist before you attempt to rely on achieving something on such shaky and unlikely grounds.

Axismundi000
06-22-2016, 12:30 AM
.........
What the alchemists believed and theorized is one thing, the actual empirical facts another very different one. Same thing for modern science, by the way. I am not picking on alchemy alone when it comes to this. A distinction between theories/speculations and actual empirical facts has to always be made. The first seek to "explain" the latter, while the latter stand by themselves, with or without intended "explanations", they just "are", they neither care nor are affected at all by what we think of them.
.........
.
JDP I have narrowed down to this part of your post because I think this is you saying pretty much what I have been explaining over several posts.

My view is that Alchemy is not a purely empirical and materialistic pursuit and many historical Alchemists added all sorts of stuff into their Alchemy, magic, astrology, mysticism. I then point out that Chemistry explains its provenance and Genesis as coming from Alchemy but is an empirical scientific discipline that relies on empirical results and entirely discounts all this other stuff. My point of difference with you has been the fact that Alchemy does not exclusively emphasise an empirical, material outcome, only Chemistry does this. It looks like you have now changed your view and now agree that Alchemists ( and therefore also I suggest Alchemy) do explore this other stuff. I recognise that you repeatedly offer your opinion that the magic, astrology and mysticism is irrelevant and in your view it is only the empirical findings that have any use or value. JDP as I have previously mentioned I am not interested in trying to change your opinion. To be frank I do not care what your opinion is on this issue. Your assertion about Alchemy also being purely empirical is factually incorrect and I decided to call you out on that. If now you are agreeing that Alchemy has all these other non-empirical things in it but you suggest with supporting evidence this other stuff ( magic, astrology, mysticism) should be dismissed then I am content to finish here. It has never mattered to me what you think should count in Alchemy and what should not, it is clear to me that the pursuit of Alchemy is not a purely material and empirical pursuit and as I say various historical texts and historical records of Alchemists clearly show this. It is clear that Alchemy involves mysticism, magic and astrology whereas the Scientific discipline of Chemistry is a purely empirical pursuit. So if you are now saying yes... Alchemy does have all this other stuff but in your opinion only the material findings are relevant the rest is nonsense. I would simply say ; thank you for your opinion.

JDP
06-22-2016, 08:32 AM
JDP I have narrowed down to this part of your post because I think this is you saying pretty much what I have been explaining over several posts.

My view is that Alchemy is not a purely empirical and materialistic pursuit and many historical Alchemists added all sorts of stuff into their Alchemy, magic, astrology, mysticism. I then point out that Chemistry explains its provenance and Genesis as coming from Alchemy but is an empirical scientific discipline that relies on empirical results and entirely discounts all this other stuff. My point of difference with you has been the fact that Alchemy does not exclusively emphasise an empirical, material outcome, only Chemistry does this. It looks like you have now changed your view and now agree that Alchemists ( and therefore also I suggest Alchemy) do explore this other stuff. I recognise that you repeatedly offer your opinion that the magic, astrology and mysticism is irrelevant and in your view it is only the empirical findings that have any use or value. JDP as I have previously mentioned I am not interested in trying to change or opinion. To be frank I do not care what your opinion is on this issue. Your assertion about Alchemy also being purely empirical is factually incorrect and I decided to call you out on that. If now you are agreeing that Alchemy has all these other non-empirical things in it but you suggest with supporting evidence this other stuff ( magic, astrology, mysticism) should be dismissed then I am content. It has never mattered to me what you think counts in Alchemy and what does not, it is clear to me that the pursuit of Alchemy is not a purely material and empirical pursuit and as I say various historical texts and historical records of Alchemists clearly show this. It is clear that Alchemy involves mysticism, magic and astrology whereas the Scientific discipline of Chemistry is a purely empirical pursuit. So if you are now saying yes... Alchemy does have all this other stuff but in your opinion only the material findings are relevant the rest is nonsense. I would simply say ; thank you for your opinion.

As I clearly explained, only a few examples of alchemical texts have some connection with things like magic, and the astrological connection was only regarding the theory of how metals are supposedly generated inside the bowels of the earth. Why do you want to make such exceptions the rule? Most alchemical literature is quite unconcerned with magic and astrology. Just to give you an example, I am going through both volumes of the "Palladis Chymicae" -written by a guy who was present during a transmutation of mercury into gold that took place in front of Emperor Ferdinand III by means of a sample of the Stone- and I haven't found even one reference to "magic" or astrology. The whole thing has to do with the preparation of special menstruums for making the Stone and "particular" tinctures out of metals/salts/minerals. It all depends on the knowledge and experimental skills of the operator. There is no mention of any "psychic/spiritual energy" emanating from the operator anywhere, or any need for mysterious "magical" rituals, or incantations/spells, or talismans/amulets, or keeping track of the movement of the planets and stars, and so forth. It's a typical alchemical text. This is what the bulk of alchemical literature is like, not odd exceptions by more "mystically" minded writers who liked to mix up some of their religious or philosophical beliefs with alchemy.

My point is that alchemy is independent of your views and beliefs. If this wasn't so, then it would have been impossible that so many people from so many different backgrounds and religious/philosophical convictions could have possibly discovered the same thing. Think about it.

Axismundi000
06-22-2016, 12:05 PM
JDP you are correct when you say that Alchemy is independent of my views and beliefs, views which I have not really shared with you in this thread. My purpose has been to repeatedly refute the fallacy that Alchemy is a purely materialistic and empirical endeavour. I note that you now rather grudgingly affirm that astrology and magic are to be found in Alchemical writings, you suggest however that these instances are too few to say that this is significant. I draw your attention to Basil Valentines Triumphal Chariot of Antimony, a paragraph I particularly like is: Matter, of all metals and minerals, one. At the very least this is emergent monism a core concept to magic, astrology and Alchemy. So I would love to hear your dismissal of this work.

You explain a historical tale of demonstration of the stone being operated at the royal court in Prague. I suggest this is no different to the painting currently on display at the Royal College Of Physicians showing Dr John Dee conjuring for her majesty Queen Elizabeth the first. With your emphasis on empiricism JDP, unless you decide to show the operation of the stone on video you are subject to your own criticism, I am not trying to challenge you to do this, it is merely that to prove that Alchemy is an empirical, materialist pursuit it would require empirical material evidence to underpin your theory. Again I affirm my disagreement over this empirical emphasis you ascribe to Alchemy JDP. Valentine's triumphal chariot of Antimony is full of what I would call mysticism I await your disagreement and alternative interpretation.

JDP
06-22-2016, 06:19 PM
JDP you are correct when you say that Alchemy is independent of my views and beliefs, views which I have not really shared with you in this thread. My purpose has been to repeatedly refute the fallacy that Alchemy is a purely materialistic and empirical endeavour. I note that you now rather grudgingly affirm that astrology and magic are to be found in Alchemical writings, you suggest however that these instances are too few to say that this is significant. I draw your attention to Basil Valentines Triumphal Chariot of Antimony, a paragraph I particularly like is: Matter, of all metals and minerals, one. At the very least this is emergent monism a core concept to magic, astrology and Alchemy. So I would love to hear your dismissal of this work.

You explain a historical tale of demonstration of the stone being operated at the royal court in Prague. I suggest this is no different to the painting currently on display at the Royal College Of Physicians showing Dr John Dee conjuring for her majesty Queen Elizabeth the first. With your emphasis on empiricism JDP, unless you decide to show the operation of the stone on video you are subject to your own criticism, I am not trying to challenge you to do this, it is merely that to prove that Alchemy is an empirical, materialist pursuit it would require empirical material evidence to underpin your theory. Again I affirm my disagreement over this empirical emphasis you ascribe to Alchemy JDP. Valentine's triumphal chariot of Antimony is full of what I would call mysticism I await your disagreement and alternative interpretation.

I see that it is you who is now agreeing with me, and that alchemy does not depend on your or anyone else's particular thoughts or beliefs, and thus it works independently of such things, and that therefore anyone who happens to discover how the Stone is made can carry out the process, which brings us back to my general assertion: empirical facts are independent of what the observer thinks of them, they just "are".

Saying that all matter is "one" is not "magic". Since ancient times natural philosophers have been speculating about this. Even many chemists and physicists have shared this view. Prout, for example, thought that all the "elements" were really made up of hydrogen, the basic "building block" of matter. That does not mean he was a "magician/sorcerer".

There is a difference between "conjuring" and a transmutation demonstration. Things like conjuring can be easily faked, countless charlatans are still doing it today. Transmutation, on the other hand, is quite difficult to be tampered with. Notice that very few in history have gotten away with such a fraud, and even when they did, they eventually got caught, their tricks being not very difficult to be discovered (there are even entire "manuals" devoted to the topic of detecting and exposing charlatans and cheats pretending to be alchemists or possessors of samples of the Stone; read, for example, Maier's "Examen Fucorum Pseudo-Chymicorum" or Stanihurst's "Toque de Alquimia".) Transmutation demonstrations are usually carried out at high temperatures and thus require special equipment, like furnaces and crucibles, which are in constant view by all present during the demonstration, and the operator himself is under close scrutiny by the witnesses, and often the person who donated the transmuting agent was NOT even present during the experiment, the operation being carried out by the skeptical themselves. So the two demonstrations are quite different in nature. One can be easily faked, the other one not so much.

Axismundi000
06-22-2016, 08:15 PM
You persist in the assumption that anything that is independant or outside of us must be entirely material or empirical JDP, only from the perspective of modern science is this so. Alchemy is not in the same paradigm as modern scientific methodology or enquiry. The possibility that there is anything outside apart from this material causality does not even impinge, thus you genuinely felt you 'had me' because what other possibilities could there be from your perspective.

Whether or not conjuring can be easily faked or transmutation easily faked ( I'm sure a proficient stage performer could readily achieve both ) is not in question here, or at least not for me. My only position is that Alchemy is not a purely material or empirical paradigm, the validity or truth of the Alchemy paradigm I have not addressed I have simply asserted that Alchemy is not totally empirical and materialistic, rather it has varied spiritual or religious ideas also.

Magic, mysticism and astrology also conjuring all have Hermetic and neo-platonic ideas as indeed does Alchemy. I have no problem repeating this ad infinitum JDP. I find your posts a very usefull way to illustrate that Alchemy is a spiritual pursuit as much as it is an empirical one, unlike chemistry which an empirical science. Personally I feel it is very important to examine the Spiritual work of Alchemy and what better way then to have a hard-line empiricist to bounce these things off.

So, the ideas outlined in the paragraph I mention from Valentines famous work are entirely in keeping with the world view of a magician, mystic or astrologer, material such as the corpus hermeticum clearly shows this. I look forward to your next rebuttal JDP.

JDP
06-23-2016, 11:00 AM
You persist in the assumption that anything that is independant or outside of us must be entirely material or empirical JDP, only from the perspective of modern science is this so. Alchemy is not in the same paradigm as modern scientific methodology or enquiry. The possibility that there is anything outside apart from this material causality does not even impinge, thus you genuinely felt you 'had me' because what other possibilities could there be from your perspective.

I persist on this point because that is one of the claims being talked about, namely: that alchemy depends on some mysterious "force" coming from the part of the operator himself. If this is so, then it prompts the question of why so many who have dabbled in alchemy have failed despite the fact that they all wanted to succeed? Nobody wanted to fail. And also why did those who succeed go through a great deal of trouble not to explain it in a totally clear manner, seeing as this would be quite unnecessary if it really depends on some mysterious "force" by the operator himself? The materials and processes to work with would not be as important as this "force", then, therefore trying to obfuscate their identity would hardly be a priority. Yet the literature of alchemy is quite preoccupied in precisely doing that: not being too clear regarding what are the materials to be used. Why so much secrecy regarding these materials if, as some nowadays believe, this is supposedly not the important part but the alleged "spiritual/psychic" forces of the alchemist himself? The contradiction between what the alchemists actually did and this strange modern claim are thus quickly perceived.


Whether or not conjuring can be easily faked or transmutation easily faked ( I'm sure a proficient stage performer could readily achieve both ) is not in question here, or at least not for me.

Since you were apparently comparing both subjects, the necessary distinction had to be made. If transmutations can be easily faked, why aren't there any con artists doing it now? Trying to pull a trick like this is very hard, and historically most of these cheats were caught and their tricks exposed. It is even a recurrent topic in literature (think of Chaucer's "The Canon's Yeoman's Tale", for example.) The nature of alchemy, grounded on empirical operations, makes it so. Try to substitute the contents inside a blazing hot crucible (say, get rid of a mass of molten lead and put a similar amount of gold or silver in its place) in the middle of a furnace without any of the witnesses around you noticing it. Not an easy task by any means, even for a David Copperfield. To add even more problems to this scenario, the person who prepared or donated the transmuting "tincture" was often not even present during the demonstration, so trickery on his part can't be suspected.


My only position is that Alchemy is not a purely material or empirical paradigm, the validity or truth of the Alchemy paradigm I have not addressed I have simply asserted that Alchemy is not totally empirical and materialistic, rather it has varied spiritual or religious ideas also.

But alchemy itself has to be independent of those spiritual and religious ideas of its practitioners, otherwise it seems quite impossible that people of so many different religious/spiritual convictions could have succeeded in doing the same thing. Much like any other science, alchemy is quite unaffected by your personal beliefs. The religious/spiritual beliefs of a physicist, for example, are not going to stop gravity from pulling things down towards the center of the earth. The empirical facts of that science are quite independent from the personal beliefs of its professors. Same with alchemy.


Magic, mysticism and astrology also conjuring all have Hermetic and neo-platonic ideas as indeed does Alchemy. I have no problem repeating this ad infinitum JDP. I find your posts a very usefull way to illustrate that Alchemy is a spiritual pursuit as much as it is an empirical one, unlike chemistry which an empirical science. Personally I feel it is very important to examine the Spiritual work of Alchemy and what better way then to have a hard-line empiricist to bounce these things off.

So, the ideas outlined in the paragraph I mention from Valentines famous work are entirely in keeping with the world view of a magician, mystic or astrologer, material such as the corpus hermeticum clearly shows this. I look forward to your next rebuttal JDP.

Basil Valentine was said to be a Benedictine monk. Whether it is true or not, that's the identity that was assumed by whoever wrote the texts under that name. Why would anyone then not expect him to have a pious style? I think you might be confusing this piety in his style with what he was actually doing in his lab. The "Triumphal Chariot" in fact is full of empirical directions for preparing antimony compounds. Give some examples from the "Triumphal Chariot" of what you have in mind as being "full of mysticism", though. I suspect that what you have in mind is what Archibald Cockren referred to as "theological discourse", which he implies has an ulterior purpose, and it does not have to do with religion but with some hidden lab instructions, or "key", as he calls it.

Axismundi000
06-23-2016, 05:20 PM
..........Much like any other science, alchemy is quite unaffected by your personal beliefs. The religious/spiritual beliefs of a physicist, for example, are not going to stop gravity from pulling things down towards the center of the earth. The empirical facts of that science are quite independent from the personal beliefs of its professors. Same with alchemy. ............


This here is the crux of why you are so obviously wrong JDP:

Alchemy is not and never has been a science and this is the fundamental fallacy and error that you so obdurately and entertainingly assert.

I shall start with a basic Wikipedia link defining Alchemy as a protoscience and in the second paragraph of explanation identifies Alchemy being influenced by "Hermetic principles related to magic, mythology and religion". I welcome the possibility that you will try to refute this JDP and each time you deny the definition of Alchemy I will find another encyclopaedia description for you to deny.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alchemy

You have some interesting ideas JDP and I have not tried to differ with you over those. My only point of difference is that you continue to argue that Alchemy is and was a science. It clearly and obviously is and was not, you are obviously totally wrong when you write that Alchemy is a science.
So JDP would you like to refute or even go on-line and change the Wikipedia entry so that I may provide the next suitable Link?

zoas23
06-23-2016, 06:06 PM
Basil Valentine was said to be a Benedictine monk. Whether it is true or not, that's the identity that was assumed by whoever wrote the texts under that name. Why would anyone then not expect him to have a pious style? I think you might be confusing this piety in his style with what he was actually doing in his lab. The "Triumphal Chariot" in fact is full of empirical directions for preparing antimony compounds. Give some examples from the "Triumphal Chariot" of what you have in mind as being "full of mysticism", though. I suspect that what you have in mind is what Archibald Cockren referred to as "theological discourse", which he implies has an ulterior purpose, and it does not have to do with religion but with some hidden lab instructions, or "key", as he calls it.

It is somehow obvious for me that Basil Valentine was a "nickname" that was uniting the names of Basilides (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basilides) and Valentinus (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valentinus_(Gnostic))... and thus making a very obvious reference to the early Christian Gnosticism.... which was, of course, a philosophy which can't be separated from Theurgy.

And I told you about it before, maybe in this same thread, can't remember where... The most famous alchemical novella is probably the Chemical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz... and its argument is somehow like a contest between several persons who aspire to become alchemists. Once the contest finishes, a group of peole are told that they "won" and they are taught to transmute base metals into gold... They are also told that Christian Rosenkreutz lost.

So C.R. is separated from the group of the "winners" of the contest and is told that the group of "winners" actually "lost", that they were being deceived and they were going to be taught how to transmute basic metals into gold... but that the "real" winner is him... and they teach them a different operation that is certainly NOT related to transmuting base metals into gold (since that's what the "fake winners" were taught).

It is obvious that you have a vast knowledge of classical alchemical literature, JDP... it is impossible to question such thing. That's why your views are so surprising to me (I have to admit that I don't agree with you, though I am not scandalized about your ideas and I think you have a good knowledge).

May I ask you WHY are you interested in Alchemy? Why you find it interesting or worthy? Do you find in alchemy something that goes beyond "making gold"? And what does the idea of transmuting basic metals into gold represent for you? I mean, if you manage to do such thing, what would you do with that knowledge? (I mean, besides from having lots of gold)

Illen A. Cluf
06-23-2016, 07:28 PM
I totally agree with JDP, and I also agree with Axismundi000 as well as zoas23. How can that be? Well, there are not always just two sides to a story. There's always a third, more encompassing view that seem to miss most people's notice.

Alchemy was indeed a Hermetic art. It was also Scientific, and believe it or not, it formed the very basis of Chemistry and Science as we know it today. The basics behind Alchemy were used in a purely scientific way for thousands of years to color objects; to make medicines' to gild objects so that they "looked" more valuable than they were; to make explosives; to be used as cleansing agents; to be used to fabricate various objects, such as bowls, utensils, etc.

BUT. It was also used as a direct way to understand Nature. They discovered that many/all of the processes in a laboratory setting mimicked the workings of Nature directly, but in a much smaller and "controlled" setting. The condensation in a flask was like the morning fog. The explosive nature of niter, sulfur and charcoal powder was like the thunder they heard during storms. The dissolving nature of acids was like the water eroding the limestone valleys, etc. Some matters acted like the volatile spirits in the air, while others were material, and withstood the test of fire. Some matters embraced each other like man and wife, while others repelled each other like bitter enemies in battle. Thus, if they observed very closely, they could observe the very processes of Nature and even human nature, and thereby "get closer" to their version of God. Some processes even mimicked the cycle of life, death, putrefaction, cleansing and animation, or rebirth.

So I believe that JDP is absolutely correct in that there is a purely Scientific aspect to actually making the Philosophers Stone. There's no more "magic" involved than the magic we see daily in Nature. The process has been handed down from Philosopher to Philosopher, and these "steps" can be followed by anyone who has the desire, knowledge and skill to do so, not just the rare "magician" with some type of superhuman power. But to understand the steps as explained by the old masters, they had to understand their strange language. And their language was the language of Nature ("language of the Birds"). So each step was symbolically represented by an important aspect of Nature that brought new understanding and wonder.

Thus, by the time you have actually completed the Stone, you will have obtained an incredible insight to the very workings of Nature/God, which in turn could provide further divine inspiration and even moments of epiphany. By the time you have confected the Stone, you will no longer have any need for it, as you will have obtained the very insight so long sought by many religions, much more valuable than any worldly possession.

I think this is what the Masters meant when they explained that there was both a philosophical/meditative side to alchemy as well as a physical aspect.