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Thread: Practical Alchemy - An Introduction

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by z0 K View Post
    Yes, I too have many of those olde Chymystry bookes and am aware of what you are talking about. If you are willing to consider YWorth and Bolnest to be chymysts so do I. Bolnest for one buries the process for the solvent produced in more than one way in his various processes upon plants and animals and minerals. YWorth definitely had the Secret Solvent which he details the method in his Processus Mysterii Magni Philosophicus or An Open Entrance to the great Mysteries of the Ancient Philosophers.
    Since you are familiar with those old "chymistry bookes" you already know that those guys took practically all commonly available natural substances at hand in those times and submitted them to "analysis". It doesn't look to me like any single natural matter they examined "by fire" yielded the exact same thing the alchemists describe. Some do have some RESEMBLANCE, but they are not an exact match, specially after you keep reading what the alchemists say those products/byproducts of the distillation of their "matter" do.

    If it is true what some historians say, that Y-Worth was the man behind that "Cleidophorus Mystagogus" pseudonym, it looks to me like he was just a boasting chymist pretending to be an "adept" who rambles on and on about empirical impossibilities ("unspecified matter" and the like theoretical fantasies that never took anyone anywhere.) Bolnest was a more sober person, and he certainly worked with several substances, not "one only", to make the form of the alchemical "water" that takes the appearance of "a clear, milky, crystalline, and silver liquor". Mercury (yes, common metallic mercury) was one of them (read his "Medicina Instaurata", the section regarding the "mercury" of the alchemists. He makes no secret whatsoever that he is totally convinced that common metallic mercury enters the operations to produce the white/milky/silvery "liquor" of the alchemists.)

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by tAlchemist View Post
    This is a common thing people do. "If I don't have it and he doesn't have it, you DEFINITELY don't have it".
    We are not talking about the experience of just one person here, but the accumulated experience of a whole bunch of experimenters through the centuries. A very different case. It sounds very highly suspicious that in all those centuries none of these tireless people, obsessed with investigating everything that fell into their hands, encountered any such naturally occurring matter that perfectly matches the descriptions of the alchemists.

    You need to know what the stone is before you can create it.
    Tell that fairy tale to the first person who discovered the Stone. He sure could not possibly have known what it was, yet he accidentally discovered it nonetheless. Empirical facts do not give a hoot if you "know" what they are, they just will keep on existing quite undisturbed by what you "think" about them. It's just like gravity: no one really knows what it actually is, but we all know how real it is alright. Gravity doesn't give a rat's ass about what we think "it" is, "it" will continue to be what "it" has always been no matter what we believe.

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by tAlchemist View Post
    This is a common thing people do. "If I don't have it and he doesn't have it, you DEFINITELY don't have it".
    This is literally the premise of JDP's entire crusade on this message board.

    Read through his posts and roughly 99% () of his post use this only argument.

    JDP hasn't figured it out, no one before JDP has figured it out, therefore no one else will figure it out. Right here is this guy's monument of logic...admitted and relentlessly preached...since his arrival.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    It sounds very highly suspicious that in all those centuries none of these tireless people, obsessed with investigating everything that fell into their hands, encountered any such naturally occurring matter that perfectly matches the descriptions of the alchemists.
    What made you come to that conclusion? If I had the stone and I don't know about you but I'm not gonna post it on worldstarhiphop or make a big deal about it by proclaiming it out to the World.

    There are many texts that talk about One Matter, and virtually all if not most texts that talk about nature.

    Does One Matter not sound natural to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    Tell that fairy tale to the first person who discovered the Stone. He sure could not possibly have known what it was, yet he accidentally discovered it nonetheless.
    If you can obtain the stone accidentally, then why is it that no one has reportedly made it yet? There are many individuals, many people out in the World right now, many people who have passed away, if the stone could be made accidentally than surely out of EVERYONE's trial and error, the stone would have made its way to mainstream right now.

    Accidentally. If i may, why is it called the Philosophers' Stone?

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmuldvich View Post
    This is literally the premise of JDP's entire crusade on this message board.

    Read through his posts and roughly 99% () of his post use this only argument.

    JDP hasn't figured it out, no one before JDP has figured it out, therefore no one else will figure it out. Right here is this guy's monument of logic...admitted and relentlessly preached...since his arrival.
    Apparently the fact that I am speaking not just of my own but of the COLLECTIVE EXPERIENCE OF THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE THROUGHOUT HISTORY flies over your head rather easily!

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by tAlchemist View Post
    What made you come to that conclusion? If I had the stone and I don't know about you but I'm not gonna post it on worldstarhiphop or make a big deal about it by proclaiming it out to the World.
    The fact that chymists, spagyrists and chemists have written down the results of their investigations on natural matters very clearly and without any intention of misleading anyone. Do you know anything about "official" science and how it works? Apparently you don't. Open and clear communication has been its norm since several centuries ago. Alchemists were quite a different "tribe". They were elitists and did not want just about anyone to easily figure out what they knew. Very different mindset.

    There are many texts that talk about One Matter, and virtually all if not most texts that talk about nature.
    Yes, and such texts are misleading as hell! The fact that such claims have been around for hundreds of years and never led anyone anywhere should already tell you that something is just not quite right with these mantras. Plus even as far back as the times of the Alexandrian alchemist Zosimos, the "one matter only" ruse was already being exposed as a trap and seekers being warned against it. Once again, it should give you a "hint" that something is not quite right with such a naive claim.

    Does One Matter not sound natural to you?
    Yes, totally unrealistic. It is extremely naive to really expect that any one single natural matter can possibly display everything that the alchemists describe. If you don't trust your own empirical experience on this, I direct you again to the accumulated collective one of thousands of chymists, spagyrists and chemists who through the last 400 years have investigated just about every known natural substance there is at man's reach, and their descriptions of what you can obtain from them do not match everything the alchemists say about their "matter".

    If you can obtain the stone accidentally, then why is it that no one has reportedly made it yet? There are many individuals, many people out in the World right now, many people who have passed away, if the stone could be made accidentally than surely out of EVERYONE's trial and error, the stone would have made its way to mainstream right now.
    Because it is much more difficult to discover things in the way more complex world of reactions between substances than there is about single naturally occurring substances, most of which have already been studied and cataloged since a long time ago. Even today new discoveries are still being made in this department. How many discoveries do you hear anymore about single naturally occurring substances, though? Very, very few. The natural world has been proved to death already. Nothing like the "matter" of the alchemists has ever been found there. And rest assured it will never be. That's because their "matter" is really neither "natural" nor "one thing only". It is artificial (i.e. made thanks to man's intervention) and made from the interaction of several substances.

    Accidentally. If i may, why is it called the Philosophers' Stone?
    Because the alchemists had a penchant to pretend to be "philosophers". In reality they were empiricists. Their discovery was simply the product of trial and error, which was then passed down in their writings (but not in a totally clear manner), and not because their fanciful theoretical musings really led them anywhere. You can very justifiably say that the alchemists discovered what they discovered IN SPITE OF their theories/speculations, not because of them. In their minds, it was more prestigious to be a "philosopher", though. It was the mentality of those times.

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    The fact that chymists, spagyrists and chemists have written down the results of their investigations on natural matters very clearly and without any intention of misleading anyone. Do you know anything about "official" science and how it works? Apparently you don't.
    Sorry, I didn't know you had to be apart of the ''official'' science organization to be considered a puffer, spagyrists, or a chemist.



    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    Yes, and such texts are misleading as hell! The fact that such claims have been around for hundreds of years and never led anyone anywhere should already tell you that something is just not quite right with these mantras. Plus even as far back as the times of the Alexandrian alchemist Zosimos, the "one matter only" ruse was already being exposed as a trap and seekers being warned against it. Once again, it should give you a "hint" that something is not quite right with such a naive claim.
    Not quite. I can look at that situation as the same thing that's happening today. People considering One Matter to be ''colourful philosophy'' without actually understanding the concept.

    I guessing you don't think EVERY single book is alchemical I'm assuming, right? Then surely, the people who were considering One Matter to be a trap, I could argue that they were the same ones who didn't understand the approach themselves, just like how people TODAY even without actually attempting the One Matter approach, are saying it's a dead end!

    What makes those days different than today in regards to ''exposing One Matter ruse''?



    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    Yes, totally unrealistic. It is extremely naive to really expect that any one single natural matter can possibly display everything that the alchemists describe. If you don't trust your own empirical experience on this, I direct you again to the accumulated collective one of thousands of chymists, spagyrists and chemists who through the last 400 years have investigated just about every known natural substance there is at man's reach, and their descriptions of what you can obtain from them do not match everything the alchemists say about their "matter".
    Investigation is one thing, but doing it correctly is another. I suppose we could ''investigate'' every single natural substance in hopes to create a new life form of some kind.. but certain life forms require suitable and strict environments in order to develop and then mature, and this is not just because of their extreme sensitivity in their ever-so fragile state.

    Even the Emerald Tablet says to handle the matter ''gentle and with great ingenuity''.



    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    Because it is much more difficult to discover things in the way more complex world of reactions between substances than there is about single naturally occurring substances, most of which have already been studied and cataloged since a long time ago. Even today new discoveries are still being made in this department. How many discoveries do you hear anymore about single naturally occurring substances, though? Very, very few. The natural world has been proved to death already. Nothing like the "matter" of the alchemists has ever been found there.
    In my opinion, lots of people have handled the matter in it's base state, but not knowing what it was, tossed it away, not knowing of its potential. Although, this is not one and the same as having ''found'' the matter, to have found something is to be able to identify that something you were looking for, so I agree to this extent, virtually no one has found the matter because they didn't know what it is that they were looking for, except probably a luminous bright red rock. The ones who DID find the matter kept silent, knowing it's great great potential

    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    Because the alchemists had a penchant to pretend to be "philosophers". In reality they were empiricists. Their discovery was simply the product of trial and error, which was then passed down in their writings (but not in a totally clear manner), and not because their fanciful theoretical musings really led them anywhere. You can very justifiably say that the alchemists discovered what they discovered IN SPITE OF their theories/speculations, not because of them. In their minds, it was more prestigious to be a "philosopher", though. It was the mentality of those times.
    To each their own I guess... I thought Hermes and Paracelsus were quite the philosophers.
    Last edited by tAlchemist; 1 Week Ago at 08:24 PM. Reason: Fixing the quotes (totally no good at this)

  8. #48
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    I agree, and disagree, with the "One matter only" thing. Here is why:

    The one matter only philosophy is a theoretical 'perfect' scenario. It is only possible under perfect conditions. Some Alchemists did not have the capacity to employ this theoretically perfect experiment. Hence why some Alchemists used other, similar, methods, and eventually said 'its not just one matter' because those students of the Art, wernt just using one matter. They may have used two, or three, to make the work more accessible to themselves.

    Take the Archaeus for example. We start with water, one thing. Then we introduce air, which putrifies the water and gives us Gurr. So out of supposedly 'one thing' we are actually employing multiple things. Some writing about the Archaeus in code could say "we start with one thing" but fail to mention that they introduce a second thing, air, which makes a third thing, gurr. And this is where, this continued debate will forever circle, because it is simply a matter of perspective as to what "One Matter" actually means.

    Some people started with ONE thing; and then introduced other things. There is never any way to make the stone from one thing only EXCEPT under the ABSOLUTE perfect conditions; which for some is just too difficult to achieve (however; still possible IMO)

    That is how the cookie crumbles. And it will forever continue crumbling in that very same way, never to be any different; because dispite all of our practical attempts, successes and failures; the hypothetical perfect Stone will always continue to exist IN THEORY; as is the nature of hermetisium.
    Join me; on a voyage of stupidity, and self discovery: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=vccZSHroTG4

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by z0 K View Post
    Take an herb such as Celandine (mentioned by Ripley and recommended by Hollandus) treat it as the Green Lyon in JDP's quote. Process it as Ripley outlines using only the matters you get from the distillation. See if that doesn't transform your opinion into your experience.
    In the distant past, I 've had experiences in destructive distillation of wood chips and some other matters (that's is why I have an opinion on this subject). I've seen at least two different matters producing a white smoke and the oil, but it was nothing inexplicable to chemistry. Those signs are very common it seems.

    Now, in your case, if you distill herbs, they have a "woody" part. This part will give the white smoke and an oil as wood would do. Destructive distillation of wood is also a well studied theme by scientists. We can see here the products it gives. Amongst them there is acetic acid and what Glauber was calling "wood acid". Those things can dissolve some metals but of course not in the way an alcemical solvent is suposed to do. So, I think you have not ruled out the possibility of those acids existing in your distillate. Besides, there could be other chemicals in there which dissolve the metals. From what you said, the concentrated distillate can dissolve steel and copper. I'm not surprised by steel, but the copper is usually difficult to dissolve in those acids (except maybe an oxidizer is added). Gold probably will not dissolve no matter how much you concentrate them. So, I think the most inexplicable observation you have is the dissolution of copper, but I wouldn't be surprised if chemistry finds out in the future that the combination of acids and the rest of wood distillate substances can attack this too.
    Can you make the white fume and the oil from the ashes of the herbs alone? Well, that would be interesting.

    Your experiments with soot seem much more promising to me!

    Anyway, you could also set aside the critique and continue the normal course of the experiments. What you share openly here is a rare thing to see and I appreciate your efforts!
    Last edited by theFool; 6 Days Ago at 06:21 AM.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by tAlchemist View Post
    Sorry, I didn't know you had to be apart of the ''official'' science organization to be considered a puffer, spagyrists, or a chemist.
    Chymists and spagyrists were 16th-18th century scientists, and chemists still are. They recorded the results of their investigations clearly (except in the case of transmutational chymistry, for which they often employed methods to mislead the "unworthy" and make them waste their time and money, an attitude they obviously derived from the similar one of the alchemists.)

    Not quite. I can look at that situation as the same thing that's happening today. People considering One Matter to be ''colourful philosophy'' without actually understanding the concept.
    The "concept" is very clear: fool the "unworthy" by tricking them into believing that it is really "one thing only" (quantitatively) and don't explain to them in clear terms that this supposed "one thing" is in fact a COMPOSITE of several put together by the alchemist himself. There is nothing else to this. It is nothing but a dirty trick, no matter how many excuses the more honest alchemists try to make up for those members of their "tribe" who liberally used it, and which ended up costing legions of seekers a lot of pain and sorrow, since they never found any such "one matter" anywhere in a natural setting. And how could they, really? Nature itself DOES NOT MAKE THE STONE, so even if nature knew how to concoct this "matter" it would have no use for it. It doesn't take a rocket scientist, then, to easily predict that no one will ever find any such thing already made for their convenience "somewhere" outside of an alchemist's lab.

    I guessing you don't think EVERY single book is alchemical I'm assuming, right? Then surely, the people who were considering One Matter to be a trap, I could argue that they were the same ones who didn't understand the approach themselves, just like how people TODAY even without actually attempting the One Matter approach, are saying it's a dead end!
    Nice try, but when even such well-recognized authorities like Zosimos (quoted over and over and universally revered as a great authority on the subject by Alexandrian, Byzantine and Arabic alchemists for centuries) or "Theodorus Mundanus" (who even demonstrated the reality of the Stone to Dickinson and Boyle) clearly explain what the REAL meaning of this "one matter only" trap is, then you have to be on the alert not about what they explain, but about what the other lesser writers claim. Plus empirical reality is on their side too (for reasons already explained to you, but that you keep trying to brush aside), not on the "one matter only" pushers.

    What makes those days different than today in regards to ''exposing One Matter ruse''?
    Maybe because those days were the "golden age" of alchemy, while today the subject is widely misunderstood by the majority.

    Investigation is one thing, but doing it correctly is another. I suppose we could ''investigate'' every single natural substance in hopes to create a new life form of some kind.. but certain life forms require suitable and strict environments in order to develop and then mature, and this is not just because of their extreme sensitivity in their ever-so fragile state.

    Even the Emerald Tablet says to handle the matter ''gentle and with great ingenuity''.
    I am talking about applying the same techniques of distillation that the alchemists employed on their "matter" (see the quoted example from one of Ripley's texts) but on single natural substances. The spagyrists, chymists and even chemists did that to death for centuries. They called that technique "analysis by fire", and they lifted it straight from the alchemists. No one ever found any such natural "one matter" that fully matches the descriptions of the alchemists, though.

    In my opinion, lots of people have handled the matter in it's base state, but not knowing what it was, tossed it away, not knowing of its potential. Although, this is not one and the same as having ''found'' the matter, to have found something is to be able to identify that something you were looking for, so I agree to this extent, virtually no one has found the matter because they didn't know what it is that they were looking for, except probably a luminous bright red rock. The ones who DID find the matter kept silent, knowing it's great great potential
    Again, the Stone doesn't give a hoot about what you think "it" is, not anymore than the Amazon river gave a hoot about what early explorers might have thought about it, yet nonetheless they discovered it. It is what it is, and it doesn't care what you think of it. You need to learn to distinguish between theories/speculation/conjectures and EMPIRICAL FACTS.

    To each their own I guess... I thought Hermes and Paracelsus were quite the philosophers.
    So were Plato and Aristotle, that doesn't mean they knew anything about making the Stone. Alchemy is not "philosophy", no matter how much most of its practitioners fancied themselves as such. It's an empirical science on which has been projected a series of theoretical beliefs in order to try to "explain" it and give it a supposedly more "dignified" character.

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