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Greg Marcus

Conjunction Junction

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I can remember, before I had read up on alchemy in any meaningful way, coming across references to alchemy that almost always mentioned the 'conjugal' (or even 'pornographic') imagery associated with it. Prime examples would be the Rosarium Philosophorum and Donum Dei. I'm sure most people reading this will be familiar with some version of the typical "Conjunction" (siue coitus) imagery:




This conjunction of the sun and moon brings to mind another rather "typical" form of imagery expressing the same idea.. The merging or conjoining of the disc of the sun and disc of the moon. Again, I'm sure most people reading this are familiar with some version of this:




Lately, this always reminds me of this following page from a very old book of geometry:




Ostensibly, this is dealing with the intersections between rectilinear vs. curvilinear lines (and probably how two parallel rectilinear lines never intersect, but I dunno, i don't read latin), but what I'm interested in is the space between the curvilinear. What we would refer to as the "Vesica Piscis" is here labelled "promiscui", which is defined:

prōmiscuus; first/second declension
  • not separate or distinct, mixed; mutual, shared
  • indiscriminate, promiscuous
  • common, usual, general

..which is the meaning in which it is intended, the "shared" or common space between the two. But it should be familiar to english speakers as the roots of "promiscuous":

pro·mis·cu·ous
  1. having or characterized by many transient sexual relationships.
  2. demonstrating or implying an undiscriminating or unselective approach; indiscriminate or casual.

..which adds the word "transient", which is a good description of astrological (and perhaps alchemical) "conjunctions"... being transient moments where they share the same area in the sky.


So.. Conjugal, coitus, promiscuous....


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The geometry example is from a book specifically dealing with Geometry only. It's pretty interesting, it deals with squares, then pentagons, then hexagons, etc. Although off-topic, I'm gonna share a few more images from this book for the fans of so-called "sacred geometry":

On the left is a point I make all the time:




Hexagon/Cube Constructions:




Grids. The centers of the "overlapping circles" or "field of daisies" construction are the points needed to make these:



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While the author has several works of pure geometry, he also has others that combine the.. "metaphysics". I didn't realize how on point this first image is (sun and moon) until I was collecting my images for this post:










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Comments

  1. Florius Frammel's Avatar
    Florius Frammel -
    Who is the author and from when is that last image?
    The left person seems to carry the roue de la fortune:

  2. Greg Marcus's Avatar
    Greg Marcus -
    All the pics starting with the Geometry are Charles De Bovelles. The color images are from his Opera Philosophorum, 1510. A full set of the images can be found here https://goo.gl/photos/7A8iQXNKQryaLDxaA

    It's definitely the Wheel of Fortune, below it says "Fortuna Rotunda" (and up top it has "Fortuna" as well). The Wheel of Fortune far pre-dates Tarot, and sometimes the same ideas are expressed instead with a set of Scales.. as one side ascends, the other descends.

    on the right is the "Mirror of Wisdom".

    ------



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    Updated 3 Weeks Ago at 04:55 PM by Greg Marcus
  3. Andro's Avatar
    Andro -
    The "Wheel of Fortune" is a fucking hamster wheel! Oh the irony!

  4. Salazius's Avatar
    Salazius -
    I liked your post. But you cut short the end. Unfortunately

    Maybe you could go farther in your meditation here. Otherwise your references and illustrations are really good and enhance well your vision and reflexion.

    I see maybe a link here with the two things :

    Who exactly (and more generally) tend to get into conjunction ? Fix and volatile, masculine and feminine seeds, above and below. Trevisan said it was a "children's play" simply because the elements tend to take the place of eacho one another during the coction.

    Conjunction is just a brief encounter and not only "one" moment. It comes and goes

    Conjunction generates solve, or even coagula, chaos or order, conjunction generates blackness, or redness, conjunction generates precipitation, or volatilisation... It is as separation (which is never really stressed out in alchemy), a cause and effect of all "the real colours of time" as would say an Enochean Call. In fact, of all the fireworks in the flask or crucible.
  5. Greg Marcus's Avatar
    Greg Marcus -
    Yes, for sure it's only a partial thought, and a tangent from what I am concentrating on, but a tangent that keeps coming up. Sometimes to go further I have to put the partial thought, or bullet-points out there to percolate for awhile.

    That's pretty insightful.. as I'm not a practical/practising alchemist, my focus in this is really the "union of opposites", perhaps most commonly represented by the male and female.

    "Conjunction is just a brief encounter and not only "one" moment. It comes and goes".. this is what I like under the definition of "promiscuous".. the word "transient/transience" is a perfect description.

    I like your Donum Dei post on your personal blog. I still can't find Arsenal MS. 975.
  6. Greg Marcus's Avatar
    Greg Marcus -
    Pythagorean "opposites".. just a quick copy/paste from Wikipedia:

    Here follows a rough translation of the Table of Opposites, although like all translations the precise meaning does not necessarily carry over from the original Greek. For example, "crooked" has connotations in English that it may lack in the original.
    • finite, infinite
    • odd, even
    • one, many
    • right, left
    • rest, motion
    • straight, crooked
    • light, darkness
    • good, evil
    • square, oblong

    Some sources add:
    • male, female

    In Kabbalah, it's straight (male) circle (female)