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Thread: Potentially Controversial Paragraph in 'Hermes Old & True Natural Path'

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    Potentially Controversial Paragraph in 'Hermes Old & True Natural Path'

    From the English translation of 'Hermes Trismegistus Old and True Natural Path', page 19:

    "Man is composed of body, soul and spirit, each principle has its property; the outer body or person is a living death, a dark blanket, a dead grave; it is the curse, the dwelling wall between God and the souls. The man who with all his heart loves this living death, and carries out its will, and after the teachings of Christ does not hate it, he is a child of hell; Satan has his seat in him and sends away the divine light from the soul, and so it darkens forever. If only man would kill this living death while being alive, kills it under the cross, so that this old carcass becomes a fertile field in which a precious pearl resides, a good thing, a pure noble Salt body, which, when the dust of the underlying elements cursed by their transient nature are lain down (for the elemental flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, for it is born of curse) on the day of resurrection, will rise up in Christ; it becomes a house of purified souls by means of Christ's blood, whereby the body and the soul are once more illuminated by the light of God and become equal to the angels of God, as Christ teaches. His body is then a pure Salt, a good thing, his soul a Fire, his spirit is a divine light and power, which is light, Fire and Salt, or body, soul and spirit, a new image born by the spirit of God, to the triune God as eternal praise."
    What do the here present Alchemists/Seekers make of this passage?

    Is it entirely allegorical? To what extent should it be taken 'to the letter'?

    I would be very interested in reading your perspectives on this...

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    Hey Androgynus,

    What do the here present Alchemists/Seekers make of this passage?
    For me this passage follows the development of the Hermetic Tree. Recently I read a very good book on the Mystical Qabalah. It presents the idea of two different types of 'Trees of Life'.

    The first Tree is the Fallen Tree, the image most commonly associated with the Qabalah:


    The second Tree is the Perfect Tree:


    The difference between the two is the resurrection of the Kingdom/Malkuth, or, in the words of the Old & Natural, "If only man would kill this living death while being alive, kills it under the cross, so that this old carcass becomes a fertile field in which a precious pearl resides, a good thing, a pure noble Salt body, which, when the dust of the underlying elements cursed by their transient nature are lain down on the day of resurrection, will rise up in Christ."

    There is then a transition from dwelling in the Kingdom to dwelling in the Knowledge of the Ayn, or a Covenant with the Living Elohim. It could be considered the transition from 'Living in Death' to 'Living in Elohim' (Elohim being the name for the Creator in Genesis). It's interesting to note that this Knowledge of the Ayn takes the position of Da'ath on the Fallen Tree:

    Quote Originally Posted by Wikipedia
    Da'at is not always depicted in representations of the sefirot, and could in a sense be considered an "empty slot" into which the gem of any other sefirot can be placed. Properly, the Divine Light is always shining, but not all humans can see it. The concealment or revelation of the Divine Light shining through Da'at does not actually happen in Da'at itself. It only seems that way from the human perspective within Malkuth. The perception of change can only occur in Malkuth. Humans who become self-giving (Altruism) like the Light become able to see it, and for them the benefits of Da'at's light seem "revealed". However, humans who remain selfish (Selfishness) cannot see it, and for them its benefits seem "hidden".
    Also interesting to consider is that when males hit puberty, their 'voice drops' :P

    Is it entirely allegorical? To what extent should it be taken 'to the letter'?
    I don't think it's too allegorical. More a theoretical (and dogmatic) structure to the internal practice.
    Last edited by Kiorionis; 01-23-2015 at 06:52 PM.
    Art is Nature in the flask; Nature is a vial thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Androgynus View Post
    From the English translation of 'Hermes Trismegistus Old and True Natural Path', page 19:

    What do the here present Alchemists/Seekers make of this passage?

    Is it entirely allegorical? To what extent should it be taken 'to the letter'?

    I would be very interested in reading your perspectives on this...

    IMO, the paragraph is entirely allegorical. The Stone also consists of a body (salt), soul (sulphur) and spirit (mercury). The "outer body" is the appearance of the raw matter - it's a "dark blanket" in appearance. In other words, as found in the mine, from the outside it looks greyish-black. It is only a deceptive outer appearance and not the real goodness which dwells inside. This false appearance is where evil dwells and is thus likened to a "dead grave", the barrier between God and the soul that lies within. It is the dark home of Satan, who blocks the light from entering. It is the feces that must be removed in order to reveal the true gold. Thus the matter must be "killed" while it is still alive (i.e. fresh from the mines and not yet burned in the Fire), "under the cross". This is an allusion to the Cross that sits over the World, or the symbol of Antimony. The "precious pearl" that resides inside is the pure, noble, Philosopher's Gold. It only rises from the putrefaction of the body, the "elemental flesh" or "old carcass". From this death, new life is created, and thus rises up the new-born "child" or "Christ". This is through the blood of the Red Lion or "Christ's blood", and the body and soul are illuminated by the Light. The body (Stone) then becomes a purified Salt (regulus) the soul or Philosophical Sulphur becomes a Fire, and his Spirit or Philosophical Mercury becomes a "divine light and power". Thus we have Salt, Fire and Light, or body, soul and spirit. This is the "new image" of the triune (three-parted) God.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Illen A. Cluf View Post
    IMO, the paragraph is entirely allegorical.
    Although I thank Kiorionis for his insightful and interesting post I would have to agree with Illen here. Especially in sight of the 13 letters and the 7 pillars who support that interpretation further IMO. Its also more practical in terms of labwork

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    IMO another way of saying:

    “Those who say they will die first and then rise are in error. If they do not first receive the resurrection while they live, when they die they will receive nothing.” - Gospel of Philip


    Don’t let the delusion of reality confuse you regarding the reality of the illusion.

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    'Hermes Trismegistus Old and True Natural Path', page 19:

    "Man is composed of body, soul and spirit, each principle has its property; the outer body or person is a living death, a dark blanket, a dead grave; it is the curse, the dwelling wall between God and the souls. The man who with all his heart loves this living death, and carries out its will, and after the teachings of Christ does not hate it, he is a child of hell; Satan has his seat in him and sends away the divine light from the soul, and so it darkens forever. If only man would kill this living death while being alive, kills it under the cross, so that this old carcass becomes a fertile field in which a precious pearl resides, a good thing, a pure noble Salt body, which, when the dust of the underlying elements cursed by their transient nature are lain down (for the elemental flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, for it is born of curse) on the day of resurrection, will rise up in Christ; it becomes a house of purified souls by means of Christ's blood, whereby the body and the soul are once more illuminated by the light of God and become equal to the angels of God, as Christ teaches. His body is then a pure Salt, a good thing, his soul a Fire, his spirit is a divine light and power, which is light, Fire and Salt, or body, soul and spirit, a new image born by the spirit of God, to the triune God as eternal praise."
    My opinion is that he is seeing the process of the Stone in man, perfection of the matter being seen as a universal process, even in the flesh. It is not really allegorical IMO.
    My personnal experience of Internal Alchemy made me think that our flesh body, until the energetical system is no alive, is a walking corpse. It is truly already "dead".
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salazius View Post
    our flesh body, until the energetical system is not alive, is a walking corpse. It is truly already "dead".
    ---------------------------------------


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    The passage is allegorical in a sense, and literal in a sense.

    To understand the hermetic notion of "death", it's necessary to understand what "life" is, in a hermetic context.

    First, consider what it means to be "alive", especially as pertains to such notions as "life after death". This is not life in a mechanical, material sense, but life in the sense of being alive, having an experience.

    The term "spirit" is used to denote the content of experience, especially in such a condition as no word can be applied to it. If it can be labeled, it can be said to have an "identity" or "soul", but this does not change the fundamental nature of the spirit. As the spirit moves, it moves the souls and forms relationships between them. It's these mechanisms, these rules that govern them that form the "body".

    These rules, however, are a fiction of the relationships that arise between souls as they are moved by the spirit - there is no grounds to assume that the spirit is governed by them. In fact we find in every age that those who follow the rule of their expectation over the nature they see move in front of them are the meanest and most miserable of folk. Their expectation guides their will and traps their spirit. It is these bodies, cut off from the life that created them, that we hold to be "dead".

    I hope this was helpful.
    From separation between the seen and the unseen, a feeling of distance.
    From separation between the seen and the seen, a feeling of breadth.
    From separation between the unseen and the unseen, a feeling of depth.
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    From the equivalence of alternate rotations, a feeling of choice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiorionis View Post
    There is then a transition from dwelling in the Kingdom to dwelling in the Knowledge of the Ayn, or a Covenant with the Living Elohim.
    Ein Sof, or Ayn Sof, in Kabbalah, is understood as God prior to his self-manifestation in the production of any spiritual Realm, probably derived from Ibn Gabirol's term, "the Endless One". Ein Sof may be translated as "no end", "unending", "there is no end", or Infinity. Ein Sof is the divine origin of all created existence, in contrast to the Ein (or Ayn), which is infinite no-thingness.
    Source:Ein Sof.

    Ghislain

    Edit: This has really given me something to think about...it fills in a missing link.
    Last edited by Ghislain; 05-08-2015 at 02:42 PM.
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    I didn't read the book, so I do not have the general context.

    But I believe he is talking about the old neo-platonic issue of the "earthly passions" vs. "desire" (Eros).

    ... but I'm not a fan of commenting on books which I have not read from beginning to end.

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