To most of us, the word “alchemy” calls up the picture of a medieval and slightly sinister laboratory in which an aged, black-robed wizard broods over the crucibles and alembics that are to bring within his reach the Philosopher’s Stone, and with that discovery, the formula for the Elixir of life and the transmutation of metals. But one can scarcely dismiss so lightly the science — or art, if you will –that won to its service the lifelong devotion of men of culture and attainment from every race and clime over a period of thousands of years, for the beginnings of alchemy are hidden in the mists of time. Such a science is something far more than an outlet for a few eccentric old men in their dotage.
What was the motive behind their constant strivings, their never-failing patience in the unravelling of the mysteries, the tenacity of purpose in the face of persecution and ridicule through the countless ages that led the alchemists to pursue undaunted their appointed way? Something far greater, surely, than a mere vainglorious desire to transmute the base metals into gold, or to brew a potion to prolong a little longer this earthly span, for the devotees of alchemy in the main cared little for such things.
The accounts of their lives almost without exception lead us to believe that they were concerned with things spiritual rather than with things temporal. They were men inspired by a vision, a vision of man made perfect, of man freed from disease and the limitations of warring faculties both mental and physical, standing godlike in the realization of a power that even at this very moment of time lies hidden in the deeper strata of consciousness, a vision of man made truly in the image and likeness of the One Divine Mind in its Perfection, Beauty, and Harmony.
To appreciate and understand the adepts’ visions, it is necessary to trace the history of their philosophy. So let us for step back into the past to catch a glimpse of these men, of their work and ideals, and more important still, of the possibilities that their life-work might bring to those who today are seeking for fuller knowledge and wider horizons.
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by Symbol Reader WordPress
Johfra, “Hermes Trismegistus”
In The Secret Teachings of All Ages by Manly P. Hall, I came across the following passage, which I found very illuminating:
“Before the visible universe was formed its mold was cast. This mold was called the Archetype, and this Archetype was in the Supreme Mind long before the process of creation began. Beholding the Archetypes, the Supreme Mind became enamored with Its own thought; so, taking the Word as a mighty hammer, It gouged out caverns in primordial space and cast the form of the spheres in the Archetypal mold, at the same time sowing in the newly fashioned bodies the seeds of living things. The darkness below, receiving the hammer of the Word, was fashioned into an orderly universe. The elements separated into strata and each brought forth living creatures. The Supreme Being–the Mind–male and female, brought forth the Word; and the Word, suspended between Light and darkness, was delivered of another Mind called the Workman, the Master-Builder, or the Maker of Things.“
The quote comes from a chapter devoted to “The Life and Teachings of Thoth Hermes Trismegistus,“ and specifically to the first part of the Corpus Hermeticum, i.e. “Poemandres, The Shepherd of Men,“ in which Hermes has a vision of the wise primordial being – the self-begotten World Serpent, the Great Dragon, the Mind of the Universe and the Creative Intelligence – who tells him the secrets of Creation. This supreme being personifies Logos – the word of God/dess which is made flesh.
As the power of Shiva and Shakti lies in their union, so the greatness of Hermes is derived from his union with Anima Mundi – the Soul of the World. Hermes/Thoth is a patron of all brands of soulful knowledge: he presides over the marriage of mysticim and science. Magic, alchemy, symbology, astrology, tarot are all under his dominion. The Egyptian Thoth was a lunar god characteristically depicted as an ibis with a beak resembling a lunar crescent, thus strengthening the god’s union with the Soul of the World, but also his being bound to the cycles of time and to the sublunar world of matter and manifestation. Manly P. Hall writes this about the lost legendary Book of Thoth:
“This work contained the secret processes by which the regeneration of humanity was to be accomplished and also served as the key to his other writings. Nothing definite is known concerning the contents of the Book of Thoth other than that its pages were covered with strange hieroglyphic figures and symbols, which gave to those acquainted with their use unlimited power over the spirits of the air and the subterranean divinities.“
The ability of mediating and moving freely between different contradictory realms (for example the heavens and the underworld) was one of the chief attributes of the Greek Hermes. In alchemy, it was in the hermetic vessel where the spiritual regeneration and rebirth took place as the intellect was blended with passions and emotions. The richness of this symbolism is visible in the glyph for the astrological symbol of Mercury is interestingly analyzed by Barbara G. Walker in The Women’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets:
“ The cross marked Hermes a god of four-way crossroads, the four quarters of the earth, the four elements, the four divisions of the sacred year, the four winds, and the solstices and equinoxes represented by their zodiacal totems Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius-the bull, lion, serpent, and man-angel symbols adopted by Christians to represent the four evangelists. Sometimes, the cross of Hermes was an ankh, standing on a crescent that signified his mother the moon. This evolved into the conventional sign of Mercury, a circle with a cross Sign of Mercury (Hermes) below and a crescent above.”
In the quote which opens my post there is a reference to mind as a builder. In astrology, Mercury rules two signs: Gemini and Virgo; this duality refers to a need for practical realization of thoughts, ideas and projects. In his Complete Astrology, Alan Oken refers to Mercury as “the transmitter of the spiritual to the material.” As Mercury approaches a superior conjunction with the sun tomorrow, I was prompted to look at a classic distinction that Michael R. Meyer (inspired by Dane Rudhyar) made into four types of natal Mercury (http://www.khaldea.com/planets/merc_pd.shtml). We are currently in the Promethean-Direct phase of Mercury:
“Promethean-Direct types are generally more able to effectively project their visions, reforms and agendas … upon the social and intellectual world, making things happen on a large-scale.“
I hope this leads us to a creative future.
Paul Manship, “Prometheus“
This is the Stone of the Wise, the Philo-Sophia Stone, the Stone of the True Care of Wisdom, the Wisdom of Right-Action. It is all about doing Right, living in Truth and Morality. That is the True Self. Unity Consciousness in Unity with Truth and Morality to get to Unity Foundation Living in the Aggregate Co-Creation
Kris Nelson makes awesome infographics.
As you can see he is the artist who did the philosophers stone graphic I like so much. This podcast is the 13th and final in a series at his site evolveconsciousness.org about the Alchemical concept of the
The Philosopher’s Stone
His podcasts are deep but rather monotone and logical without any emotion in his voice. I like some of his work so much, I think I will make a page dedicated to my favorites of his works. I’ve been slacking on adding credit to the couple infographics I use. I plan to get written permission but I believe he’s okay with having his graphics used. Most artists who do infographics do it for wanting the truth out there in the best form for teaching the general public. Making complex symbolism easy to understand.
Rest awhile and everything will be fine.Quote 16 — Alex Markovich
We simply need to take a short break.
Being Buddha means taking a short break from being a human.
Being Buddha doesn’t mean working your way up as a human.
– Kodo Sawaki
I didn’t mean to change my theme, now I have this complicated fancy preset one to customize.
Sunday Coffee is the best. A great legal drug caffeine. When you can mix both stimulants and relaxation, its a great weekly Holiday for most folk.
I grew up in a very religious family. I could (and maybe will ) write a book about how my fanatically religious father created a very turbulent childhood by being a sort of wandering Gypsy – Occultist (Mormon) -Christian mix.
It was this mix that caused me to become a sort of / Semi-Pagan / Christian / agnostic worship student (scientist over worship) Alchemist.
The weekdays were the seven stars.
Sunday. Sunday/sun Monday/Moon – through to – Saturday/Saturn.
Jesus and the Sun were associated as God in the beginning. The word Amen came from Amen Ra. The entomology of these words in the original middle eastern languages and manuscripts were different than the translated Bible books. If it wasn’t for Constantine, the worship of Jesus would probably be fully Jewish, and that was the plan. The Jews denied Jesus but the original worship of Jesus was highly Jewish before the Creeds were established so that they could join religion and Roman leaders and other politicos in a way that would make both Roman Christian and Pagans happy with Christianity oriented variations of Pagan Icon worship – holidays and rituals.
Here are some links to authors who can say it much better than I can.
Most Christmas customs are, in fact, based on old pagan festivals, the Roman Saturnalia and the Scandinavian and Teutonic Yule. Christians adopted these during the earliest period of Church history. The Church, however, has given this recognition and incorporates it into the Church year without too many misgivings. Only the more radical fundamentalist elements in some churches protest from time to time about this mixing of ‘pagan’ elements into the religion.”
JESUS was also combined with popular Egyptian religious holidays and figures as well.
The documented history of Egypt dates back to the age of codification (about 3200 BC) and over more than 5300 years of its written history. Although the country was subjected to military occupation dozens of times over this long period, Egypt changed its religious doctrine only twice. The first was in the first Century with Christianity, and the second with Islam in the seventh century. In fact, Egypt has succeeded in injecting both Islam and Christianity with many of its ancient beliefs. In the end, the essence of the ancient Egyptian doctrine was centered on faith in the resurrection after death, reckoning, paradise and hell, all of which are essential components to all the Abrahamic religions.
Perhaps we need to explain how Egypt created its own version of Islam in a separate article. But for Christianity, the Egyptian touches are very influential in the religion that has spread worldwide. They bear the authentic Egyptian features that the country’s people have embraced since ancient times until it appeared it was Christian before the birth of Christ thousands of years ago.
Christianity, which appeared in the first century, was considered another version of Judaism. In the vast pagan ocean, which extends to the Roman Empire , the early Christians were seen only as a group of Jewish sects who failed to establish their kingdom at the hands of their leader (the Savior), who rebelled against the Roman state, so he was punished like one. Christianity crystallized in the form of an independent religion and doctrine separate from Judaism only after passing through Egypt, which gave it three of the most important components.
The early Christians did not use the cross as a symbol. Until the fourth century AD, Christians in the ancient world used the fish symbol “Ichthys in Greek” or ΙΧΘΥΣ, the oldest known Christian symbol.
As for the symbol of the cross used by Christians throughout the world, it is the development of an ancient Egyptian symbol, “Ankh”, which carries the meaning of eternity, or life after death.
In the Coptic Museum in Cairo there are many archaeological evidence on the evolution of the use of this symbol and its adoption by Egyptian Christians as a decorative element at the beginning and then as a symbolic value associated with the eternity of Christ and defying death.
In the Coptic Museum in Cairo there are some tombstones that have a fascinating development of the use of the symbol of Ankh, which was traditionally placed as a sail for the Ra boat in the other life to cross the sea of darkness. After Christianity, the first Christians in Egypt also placed on their graves the Ra’s sailboat, but with a slight change in the form of the ankh symbol to become closer to the shape of the cross.
The evolution of the symbol of the cross from the pharaonic symbol Ankh is closer to archaeological studies than the common hypothesis that the symbol of the cross refers to the instrument of torture used to crucify Christ. The ancient Roman cross that Christ was supposed to have been crucified on was T-shaped, which was different from the shape of the known cross.
The oldest creed that Egypt had known for thousands of years was based on the Holy Trinity, the Father God Osiris, the Mother Goddess Isis, and the Son Horus, whom Isis bore without defiling herself. (Sounds familiar?)
In fact, all the early Christians preserved their original faith while introducing some new details. Soon the Isis temples spread in Egypt were transformed into churches. The statues of Isis carrying her child Horus metamorphosed to the Virgin Mary holding the Christ which later spread with Christianity to all parts of the world.
continued at link
My Fathers faith is a whole other story for another post, but Mormonism is a very complicated religion. Christians like to call it Pagan but that’s the pot calling the kettle black. It’s polytheism, with the Abrahamic icons combined with Angles of a new sort. For being the newest Abrahamic and only truly American (created in America) religion, it has a huge worldwide following.
The polygamy of the early days, (some small break off pockets of them still exist) created an exponential growth that still has an influence, mental and otherwise.
Mainstream Christians point the polytheist finger but trinity worship could be called polytheist if they believe father, son, holy spirit, to be separate individuals.
Gee wiz this post got much bigger than I planned.
“Without self knowledge, without understanding the working and functions of his machine, man cannot be free, he cannot govern himself and he will always remain a slave.”