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Thread: The Vow of the Hand of the Philosophers

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    The Vow of the Hand of the Philosophers

    Can ANYONE tell me, whether or not there are people who still to this day; make the vow by the hand of the philosophers in order to know the secrets of the salts?

    Does that practise still exist?

    I was thinking of just making the vow between me and God.

    Is there a record of the exact vow made by these men?

    Any info will help. Cheers.we
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    What vow are you talking about...?

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    Hollandus says somthing along these lines:

    "This is the Hand of the philosophers, which the ancient sages would vow and pledge their loyalty to their master and only after making the vow to never reveal these secrets except where it seemeth good for the Art. If one has not made this vow and does not know the Hand, then I urge you not to practise or study alchemy, because without the secrets of the hand you shall find no success"

    Those arnt the exact words but just the jist from what i remember.

    You know the hand with the 5 symbols above the fingers and the fish and fire in the palm?
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    Quote Originally Posted by elixirmixer View Post
    You know the hand with the 5 symbols above the fingers and the fish and fire in the palm?
    Fully aware.

    Quote Originally Posted by elixirmixer View Post
    Hollandus says somthing along these lines:

    "This is the Hand of the philosophers, which the ancient sages would vow and pledge their loyalty to their master and only after making the vow to never reveal these secrets except where it seemeth good for the Art. If one has not made this vow and does not know the Hand, then I urge you not to practise or study alchemy, because without the secrets of the hand you shall find no success"

    Those arnt the exact words but just the jist from what i remember.
    Here is exactly what Hollandus says

    "The Hand Of The Philosophers" by Hollandus

    This is the Hand of the Philosophers with their dear secret signs, with which the old sages united with each other and took secret oaths. Nobody can understand this hand with its secret signs, unless he becomes first a juror of the philosophers and has loyally served them in the Art Alchemia.

    Consequently, those who have not this Hand and do not understand its secret signs, nor have taken the oath of loyalty, are bastards in this Art. They do not possess the philosophers’ treasure. That is why I advise all those who do not possess the secrets of the Hand not to start working in the alchemical Art, nor to believe books or writings, since they will all only be cheated in the secrets of the Hand. Therefore, everybody had better be careful.

    In this Hand is locked the secret of the philosophers, that is, of the seed and the earth, as will be told later.

    Now then, I will teach my child and describe the secret hidden matter of the wise philosophers and masters of the true Art Alchemia. Nobody can use it unless he take the oath and swear not to divulge the Art and secrets and hidden signs of the sages, except he finds that it would be a good placement.

    In that case, he should also request the oath that that man should not use the Art except for the salvation of his soul. Only then can he be given the secret signs of the philosophers or sages, with their hidden signs and meanings.
    Neat to know that the two Hollandus' are father and son, eh? This proves to me that one cared about Alchemy enough to not only please himself, but found it valuable and worthwhile enough to pass the secrets of our Art along to his son so he too could reap the benefits of this arcane knowledge.

    The Hand is a cabalistic representation of our Matter (see my above emphasis in Hollandus' words), Elixirmixer.

    The different fingers represent different stages of our Work/the different phases of our Matter during its maturation into the Philosopher's Stone.

    This "vow" you are asking about is swearing not to divulge our Matter openly to the public.

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    Hmmm....

    Interesting notions there mate.

    Ill have to meditate on this.

    He explains how to prepare each finger??.... however, i did find it interesti g that he was using limestone to create salt-petre because i dont think limestone has much potassium...
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    JDP .... What do you think about this Vow/Oath of the Alchemists ?

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    This "vow" you are asking about is swearing not to divulge our Matter openly to the public.
    For the sake of balance we should say matters or matter.

    Any info will help. Cheers.
    Oaths involving alchemy go back to Egyptian goldsmiths and the royalty. Even earlier if you want to get into the Sumerian " Patches of Priesthood ".
    Goldsmiths were highly valued and had a lot of leeway compared to others.
    When they used electrum on Queen Hatshepsut's obelisks they had to take oaths to Amun.
    "I was sitting in the palace and I remembered the One who created me; my heart directed me to make for him two obelisks of electrum [a natural alloy of gold and silver], that their pyramidions might mingle with the sky amid the august pillared hall between the great pylons of [Tuthmosis I]....My Majesty began work on them in Year 15, second month of Winter, day 1, continuing until Year 16, fourth month of Summer, day 30, making 7 months in cutting [them] from the mountain."
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/egypt/raising/luxor.html

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harpocrates
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sub_rosa

    Does that practise still exist?
    The origin of vows and oaths distinctly involving alchemy in Europe the last few centuries, probably are Tobias Hess.

    There is an air of contradiction when it comes to secret vows and universal medicine.....
    the pursuit of immortality and Pluto's daughter has fuelled nearly all secret societies in mankind's history.
    Alchemy is taken very seriously, masonic bodies subtly encourage members to practise alchemy as what they should be doing along with their practise.
    Last edited by Kibric; 3 Weeks Ago at 08:10 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by black View Post
    JDP .... What do you think about this Vow/Oath of the Alchemists ?
    The author, like countless others, is trying to impress the general public by making it look like alchemy is some sort of "Divine" thing. These texts were written during ages when superstition and blind faith in religion were rampant among almost everyone, even the better educated and the best critical minds (Newton & Boyle, for example, were deeply religious and believed in all sorts of uncorroborated things appertaining to religion, for which they had no proof whatsoever, the result of blind faith being instigated upon them since childhood, no doubt.) The reality for hiding how to make the Stone is actually more "substantial" and logical: it is counterproductive for the alchemists to openly and freely reveal how this "Stone" is made. Since the alchemists from the very beginning of their "art" refused to teach how to make this thing in 100% clear terms that everyone could easily understand, it means that all alchemists since have had a tough time unraveling the secret. It costed them years of hard work and lots of money to figure out the thing. No one likes to give away for free or even for a big "reward" something that has cost so much to gain (again, it's not just the money spent, but also the effort, both intellectual and physical, invested in the thing.) Self-preservation and self-interest, two very healthy, natural habits, will always kick in. The alchemist wants to fully take advantage of his gained knowledge. If he reveals it to everyone, a whole bunch of people will want to do the same, they will quit their work and start making precious metals galore. The advantage will eventually vanish as gold & silver will inevitably be devalued due to an overabundance. Everyone, including the alchemist himself, will be screwed, plus a lot of other jobs, many necessary for human society to continue to function properly, will be ruined. Some alchemists were in fact very honest about this and do not doubt to explain the real reason why this knowledge has been carefully kept secret. Some examples:

    http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showt...5336#post45336

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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmuldvich View Post
    The Hand is a cabalistic representation of our Matter (see my above emphasis in Hollandus' words), Elixirmixer.

    The different fingers represent different stages of our Work/the different phases of our Matter during its maturation into the Philosopher's Stone.

    This "vow" you are asking about is swearing not to divulge our Matter openly to the public.
    Quote Originally Posted by elixirmixer View Post
    Hmmm....

    Interesting notions there mate.

    Ill have to meditate on this.

    He explains how to prepare each finger??.... however, i did find it interesti g that he was using limestone to create salt-petre because i dont think limestone has much potassium...
    Hollandus was not using limestone to create saltpeter.

    Do you remember what he (and every other Alchemist) reiterates over and over again...?


    "A Work Of Saturn" by Hollandus

    Therefore doth the name remain concealed, for the evils' sake which might thence proceed.

    All the strange Parables which the Philosophers have spoken mystically, of a Stone, a Moon, a Furnace, a Vessel, all this is Saturn; for you must not put any strange thing unto it, only what comes from it, therefore there is none so poor in this world, which cannot operate and promote this work; for Luna may be easily made of Saturn, in a short time, and in a little longer time Sol may be made out of it.

    And though a man be poor, yet may he very well attain unto it, and may be employed to make the Philosopher's Stone.

    Wherefore my Child, all is concealed in Saturn, which we have need of, for in it is a perfect Mercury, in it are all the Colours of the world, which may be discovered in it; in it are the true black, white and red Colours, in it is the weight, Saturn is our Lattin.

    No double-speak is used like Fulcanelli enjoyed using, nor is there any reading-between-the-lines in these particular paragraphs from Hollandus.

    Hollandus is openly explaining here without any obfuscation that nothing at all (including limestone, tatar, arsenic, etc) is added to our Matter during our Work, so when he is writing about things like "limestone" we are to understand that this is only a word he is using to describe the appearance and characteristics of what he is actually talking about.

    Recall the point you were making in previous threads recently, Elixirmixer, about realizing the whole point of our Art being 'solve et coagula'.

    "Opus Alchymiae" by Hollandus

    Our Stone also grows out of the foul, stinking Materi in which it is white and clear, just as glass grows out of the foul earth and is also beautiful and clear.

    Therefore the ancients and wise men write: Our Stone purifies itself and separates itself from all uncleanliness.

    The ignorant ones, who do not understand this, rebuke the ancients for having said this.

    Can it be said any more straightforward than this?

    Will you still refuse to accept that when Hollandus speaks of limestone, vinegar, potash, etc. he is using these words as decknamen to obscure what he is actually referring to?

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    Okay Smernoff. Are the stages of progression in your 'One Matter' Hollandus model sequential?

    Does our matter change from salt petre to vitriol to alum to sal ammoniac to sea salt? In that order (metaphorically speaking i mean).... or is there more to it than that?

    May i ask Smernoff; where do you grab your mayter from? Veggie, animal, mineral, man, or universal? If your willing....

    Also something else that confuses me....

    Hollandus speaks (in the section on the practical work of sea salt) about the spirit and the corpus of salts, which i have done and find very interesting;

    Does 'Our Matter' then separate itself into an 'above' body and a 'below' body?

    Mainly what im asking is if your right Smernoff; is there a way we are to understand the order of evolution?
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