ernobe

Practical alchemy apology

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On 9/22/2018 at 12:26 AM, noonespecial said:

 Personally, I find Hermetic concepts much simpler and more effective in their pure, neo-platonic form (as presented in the Corpus Hermeticum and the ET), rather than with all the Jewish stuff grafted on to it.

In my opinion Qabalah and Alchemy should have never been mixed in the first place.

 

Alchemy in its purest is simply a set of principles describing how the process of creation works. How one becomes all, and all becomes one. Everything else is foreign addition that in theory may serve as crutches but can also - and in my opinion most often it is - just serve as unnecessary bells and whistles that distract from the real point. If anything, Daoist internal alchemy seems to be far more pure and direct than any of the western traditions.

 

On 9/22/2018 at 2:00 AM, ernobe said:

I'm sure you'll fit right in.  You can apply to his Yahoo group

Thank you, but not interested.

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On 9/21/2018 at 4:26 PM, noonespecial said:

 

Hermetism (and for that matter, alchemy) existed before the popular version of the tree of life we are all familiar with came to be (unless we count the much older Sumerian versions). Personally, I find Hermetic concepts much simpler and more effective in their pure, neo-platonic form (as presented in the Corpus Hermeticum and the ET), rather than with all the Jewish stuff grafted on to it. That is, the principles presented in the above mentioned works, taught by an effective guide, can stand (that is to say, they work) on their own without Qabalah or Tarot, etc.

 

With all that being said I think the stripped down version of qabalistic initiation presented by the GD is incredibly powerful in the right hands, and the qabalah presented by the founders of the GD is quite unlike any modern Jewish incarnations which I find to be rather 'fluffy'.  Turns out the Qabalah practiced by the R+C might be an offshoot of a 'lost' oriental/continental Sabbatean Kabbalah, I'm sure you will enjoy the read at the following link which explains the connections there. Enjoy!


The Origins of the Qabalistic Tradition of the Golden Dawn

 

 

I see no reason to focus on a specific branch of the "Qabalah practiced by the R+C" (the German), to the exclusion of the more original, and consequently broader, Latin tradition, as the GD seems to.   It could be due to a language barrier, and consequently to their having to rely on secondary material, rather than the original tradition.

 

As for the CH and the ET, considering their relatively late dating, it is likely that they are an expression of Hermetic material with, as you say, "Jewish stuff grafted onto it".  The more original Hermetic material can be traced to the Sumerian religion, and its diagramatic expression in the Tree of Life ( see for example the study of Simo Parpola called The Assyrian Tree Of Life ).   

 

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On 1.10.2018 at 7:21 PM, Unicorn said:

In my opinion Qabalah and Alchemy should have never been mixed in the first place.

 

Alchemy in its purest is simply a set of principles describing how the process of creation works. How one becomes all, and all becomes one. Everything else is foreign addition that in theory may serve as crutches but can also - and in my opinion most often it is - just serve as unnecessary bells and whistles that distract from the real point. If anything, Daoist internal alchemy seems to be far more pure and direct than any of the western traditions.

 

Thank you, but not interested.

Totally aggree with your statement what alchemy is.......i would say that external alchemy and internal alchemy are basically the same just one with the body/mind and the other with substances outside of the body.

 

Some neidan schools still have the methods for waidan also....but told me that it only leads to the "human immortal" level.

 

best

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On 10/1/2018 at 10:21 AM, Unicorn said:

In my opinion Qabalah and Alchemy should have never been mixed in the first place.

 

Alchemy in its purest is simply a set of principles describing how the process of creation works.

 

Correct, it is a verb not a noun, and can be applied internally and externally. 

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On 10/3/2018 at 9:02 AM, ernobe said:

 

I see no reason to focus on a specific branch of the "Qabalah practiced by the R+C" (the German), to the exclusion of the more original, and consequently broader, Latin tradition, as the GD seems to.   It could be due to a language barrier, and consequently to their having to rely on secondary material, rather than the original tradition.

 

As for the CH and the ET, considering their relatively late dating, it is likely that they are an expression of Hermetic material with, as you say, "Jewish stuff grafted onto it".  The more original Hermetic material can be traced to the Sumerian religion, and its diagramatic expression in the Tree of Life ( see for example the study of Simo Parpola called The Assyrian Tree Of Life ).   

 


I'm not seeing any Jewish stuff grafted into the ET or the CH. Can you give some examples?

 

Also, it should be noted the Zohar itself is dated 'late' and the Yetzirah is at the least a complete rip off of Pythagorean theories. 

Edited by noonespecial

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On 10/1/2018 at 10:21 AM, Unicorn said:

If anything, Daoist internal alchemy seems to be far more pure and direct than any of the western traditions.

 

That's probably true, I dont enough about Daosim to say but likewise the Indian traditions, Rasayana, Ayurveda and Shaivism seem to be completely intact and it seems the whole of Hermetic cosmology and theory can be found in the Upanishads, just substitute 'Holy Guardian Angel' for the Atman. The whole of the western tradition seems at times to be a reconstruction of a reconstruction. 

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@noonespecial

The "Jewish stuff" (including much stuff in the Zohar) includes, according to traditional histories among the Arabs, the philosophies of Plato and Aristotle, whom they regard as having obtained their ideas from the Jews.    The Corpus Hermeticum is chock full of it.  As for the Emerald Tablet, the Yetzirah, and older parts of the Zohar, there is evidence to suggest that they are indeed part of the older, authentic Tradition.

 

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5 hours ago, ernobe said:

@noonespecial

The "Jewish stuff" (including much stuff in the Zohar) includes, according to traditional histories among the Arabs, the philosophies of Plato and Aristotle, whom they regard as having obtained their ideas from the Jews.    The Corpus Hermeticum is chock full of it.  As for the Emerald Tablet, the Yetzirah, and older parts of the Zohar, there is evidence to suggest that they are indeed part of the older, authentic Tradition.

 

 

Can you give specific examples of the Jewishness of the Corpus or ET, or are you saying the both spring from an earlier tradition, which I would agree with. 

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13 minutes ago, noonespecial said:

 

Can you give specific examples of the Jewishness of the Corpus or ET, or are you saying the both spring from an earlier tradition, which I would agree with. 

 

You can do so yourself.  Did you not say previously that you prefer the Hermetic concepts in their pure, neo-platonic form, as presented in the CH and ET?   In their Sumerian form these concepts appeared as the Tree of Life, and have been transmitted to us by the Jews.  They had no need to graft anything onto the Tree, because all they had to do was become re-acquainted with the teachings that had already been given them by Abraham.  This is according to traditional accounts among the Arabs, that Abraham was acquainted with and transmitted the Sumerian lore, such as alchemy and astrology.

 

I think there has been some confusion generated over these concepts, particularly in presentations like that of Rubaphilos, in which initiation is presented as something in which the initiated has no way of knowing what it is that he or she is being initiated into beforehand.  As a workaround, even Rubaphilos finds himself recommending that candidates familiarize themselves with the degree system of the Order of the Golden Dawn before initiation.   The true doctrine is even clearer in the work of Oswald Wirth expounding the Hermetic symbols of alchemy in Freemasonry (which he derives from the Rosicrucians).  Particularly his exposition of the psychological archetypes related to the planets has much in it to link it with Rubas' presentation of the Partzufim.  Unfortunately the work exists only in the original French (and the Spanish translation I own), as far as I can tell.

 

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5 hours ago, ernobe said:

 

You can do so yourself.  Did you not say previously that you prefer the Hermetic concepts in their pure, neo-platonic form, as presented in the CH and ET?  

 

 

I don't see any mention of a sixfold system / Partzufim in the ET or CH, it seems cut and dry; Spirit, Soul, Body based philosophy, just wondering what you find Jewish about it? 

Edited by noonespecial

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13 hours ago, noonespecial said:

 

I don't see any mention of a sixfold system / Partzufim in the ET or CH, it seems cut and dry; Spirit, Soul, Body based philosophy, just wondering what you find Jewish about it? 

 

What isn't Jewish about Spirit, Soul, Body?

 

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Just for the sake of completeness, I'm posting some diagrams from the work of Oswald Wirth mentioned previously:

 

wirth.png.00cd684e523a36e09ff07cb25cd59c60.png

 

Their relationship on the Tree is clearer here:

 

wirth11.png.33c469477069bae951bd376f5d5a9844.png

 

Here are the six Partzufim:

The first is called the Realizer, corresponding to Nachash:

 

wirth4.png.d986378f27cf42eb0f633b50d903d5f5.png

 

Opposite to it is the Dreamer, corresponding to Yechida:

 

wirth5.png.65d0495803d575e0c104aeecfc8de92c.png

 

Then comes the Pacifist, corresponding to Neshamah:

 

wirth6.png.5adc1eb3eda4ab8de7bb31fe798663e6.png

 

Opposite to it is the Conqueror, corresponding to Ruach:

 

wirth7.png.633580d323fd2c60bb02d3cdf9a4fe5a.png

 

Next comes the Egotist, corresponding to Chia:

 

wirth8.png.d6dffde4b08fc7db733f184867940fea.png

 

Opposite to it, the Altruist, corresponding to Nefesh:

 

wirth10.png.6577ee0a7fe9b5ce5c285b486a03d58b.png

 

EDIT: correspondences with the Partzufim are my own.

Edited by ernobe

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11 hours ago, ernobe said:

 

What isn't Jewish about Spirit, Soul, Body?

 

The division of Spirit into the Supernal Triad (Neshama, Chiah, Yechidah). 

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On 10/11/2018 at 7:23 PM, noonespecial said:

The division of Spirit into the Supernal Triad (Neshama, Chiah, Yechidah). 

 

Yet, without our mercury, nothing gets done.   Concerning this Baha'u'llah says (as translated from the Arabic by Stephen Lambden, with his notes in brackets and parenthesis):


 

Quote

 

[VII]

[1] Some have asserted that the [philosophers'] Stone (ḥajar) is the microcosm (`ālam-i asghar) [lesser world] which derives from the macrocosm (`ālam-i akbar) [the greater world]. [2] This inasmuch as they consider that humanity embodies each of the three kingdoms [species] (ajnās); namely, {i} the plant (nabat), {ii} the mineral (ḥajar) and {iii} the animal (ḥayawān). [3] [They believe] that the exterior aspect of this [bodily] temple, although it is of the microcosm (`ālam-i saghīr) is yet, in its interior aspect, an imitation of the macrocosm (hakī āz `ālam-i kabīr ast). [4] They have likened the created nature (khalq) of the [philosophers'] Stone (ḥajar) to the created nature (khalq) of the human being (insān) in terms of the fact that he appears from the earth and returns thereto. [5] But [consider also that] plants do not come forth from the earth except through [the action of the further element] water.

 

[VIII]

[1] Then understand [furthermore], O questioner, the subtleties of the mysteries I shall mention, in terms of the secrets of the words [through] but a hint (ramz) of the riddles (rumūz) of the prophets (anbiyā), so that thou may be acquainted with the secrets of this [alchemical] matter (amr). [2] If you would penetrate the riddles of that [alchemical knowledge] then know that God -- blessed and exalted be He -- created the earth through the water and created the sun so that it would shine forth upon the earth. [3] Then a vapour (bukhārī) and a smoke (dukhanī) rose up and [the] heavens (āsmān) were created. [4] Then through mature wisdom (bi-ḥikmat-i bāligha) the world [universe] (`ālam) came into being such that the heat of the sun adversely effected the earth. [5] Then, through the perfection of [divine] Power (bi- qudrat-i kāmila), He created the clouds (sahāb) so that rain would fall upon the earth and from it be manifest every color and hue (alwānhā wa ranghā) [ = the rainbow ? ).

 

 

( from https://hurqalya.ucmerced.edu/node/721/ )

 

EDIT: I'm attaching a pdf of a previous version of this translation, which includes items 8-10 in section II (omitted in the version at the above link).  The reason it was removed probably has to do with the opening sentence of section III, which is derived from a different mss. (see the introduction for details, though no reason is given for preferring one mss. to the other):

TB-MCOPT.pdf

 

FURTHER EDIT: I've found a link to another version, at the same site, which does include the missing items:  https://hurqalya.ucmerced.edu/node/287/ .

 

Edited by ernobe

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On 10/11/2018 at 3:46 PM, ernobe said:

What isn't Jewish about Spirit, Soul, Body?

Dividing reality into three planes or realms is a core concept that in itself is older than any of the traditions.

 

Here is my take:

 

The One first split into Two. Let's call these Yin and Yang for now.


Then the Two split (or re-combined, based on how you look at it) into Three. These are the three main states of energy:

- Yang + Yang = Static or dormant power. Mind. Knowledge. The mountain.
- Yin + Yang = Volatile energy. Soul. Emotion. Action. Ego. The wind or river.
- Yin + Yin = Dense energy. Lifeless without being moved. Matter. Body. The lake.

 

The mind sets the goal. The soul sets it in motion. The body realizes it*. But in order for a perfect transmutation of idea to reality through controlled action the Three must be in harmony, and for the Three to be in harmony the Two must also be in harmony.


*It appears this corresponds with Tibetan Buddhism's terms of Ground ( གཞི ), Path ( ལམ ) and Fruition ( འབྲས ).

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To add a little bit to this, we can also derive the four elements from Yin and Yang combining three parts instead of two:

Yang + Yang + Yang = Fire
Yang + Yang + Yin = Air

Yang + Yin + Yin = Water

Yin + Yin + Yin = Earth

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Here are the four elements derived from the Yin-Yang binary system:

 

Fire:     Yang (4) + Yin (0) + Yin (0)    = 4

Air:       Yin (0) + Yang (2) + Yang (1) = 3

Water:  Yin (0) + Yang (2) + Yin (0)    = 2

Earth:   Yin (0) + Yin (0) + Yang (1)    = 1

 

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I added a pdf of a previous version of Baha'u'llahs' alchemy tablet at my previous post where I quoted it (see the post for details).

 

EDIT: I've found a link to another version, at the same site, which seems to be more recent:  https://hurqalya.ucmerced.edu/node/287/ .

 

Edited by ernobe
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I'd just like to point out that this thread is about practical alchemy and the conversation has steered far from it. What's being discussed here is theoretical.

 

On 10/1/2018 at 12:21 PM, Unicorn said:

Alchemy in its purest is simply a set of principles describing how the process of creation works. How one becomes all, and all becomes one. Everything else is foreign addition that in theory may serve as crutches but can also - and in my opinion most often it is - just serve as unnecessary bells and whistles that distract from the real point. If anything, Daoist internal alchemy seems to be far more pure and direct than any of the western traditions.

 

Having been a practitioner of both Daoist inner alchemy as well as authentic western alchemy, I believe that they have nothing in common. I would be open to whatever insights you have that support such a connection however.

 

As for alchemy being merely a set of principles, I again disagree. Certainly there are principles regarding the proper handling of living materials. This handling can result in increasingly heightened appreciation of principles of the process of creation as well. But to define alchemy as being merely a set of principles is to suppose it to be merely theoretical, when in fact the opposite is true: alchemy requires and is largely concerned with intensive, hands-on lab work.

 

Best,

UFA

Edited by FraterUFA

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@FraterUFA

I'd say the thread is about the reasons for engaging in practical alchemy.  Now if you are of the opinion that they can only be given you by your personal instructor in alchemy, then I guess that would rule out having any sort of exposition or discussion in a forum like this.

 

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@FraterUFA

I'm asking why you think we have drifted away from the original subject, or have steered off course from its object.   Your exact words were that we have "drifted a long way from the original subject of the thread", and have "steered far from it", which certainly seems to imply that we have drifted or steered away from our original objective.

 

Edited by ernobe

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On 10/14/2018 at 7:45 PM, FraterUFA said:

Having been a practitioner of both Daoist inner alchemy as well as authentic western alchemy, I believe that they have nothing in common. I would be open to whatever insights you have that support such a connection however.

The connection I believe them to have results from what I said about the "set of principles". That in turn however I need to rephrase I think.

 

I believe that there are a set of principles describing how creation as an infinite cyclic process works, and both daoist alchemy and western alchemy are aiming to understand and integrate these principles, they just do so from a different vantage point. And thus I said that alchemy in its purest form is a set of principles because I think you can meditate in a cave or work in a lab and still acquire the same higher understanding of creation through these different means.

 

Also, correct me if I'm wrong but to my knowledge the ancient Chinese practical alchemists also based their lab work on daoist principles, which means there is direct connection between daoist inner alchemy and practical alchemy. And Eastern alchemy is the grandfather of Western alchemy.

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