The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

That's French for "the ancient system," as in the ancient system of feudal privileges and the exercise of autocratic power over the peasants. The ancien regime never goes away, like vampires and dinosaur bones they are always hidden in the earth, exercising a mysterious influence. It is not paranoia to believe that the elites scheme against the common man. Inform yourself about their schemes here.

Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

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Qabbalistic Keys to the Creation of Man

HENRIE STEPHEN, in A World of Wonders, published in 1607, mentions a monk of St. Anthony who declared that while in Jerusalem the patriarch of that city had shown him not only one of the ribs of the Word made flesh and some rays from the Star of Bethlehem, but also the snout of a seraph, a finger nail of a cherub, the horns of Moses, and a casket containing the breath of Christ! To a people believing implicitly in a seraph sufficiently tangible to have its proboscis preserved, the more profound issues of Judaistic philosophy must necessarily be incomprehensible. Nor is it difficult to imagine the reaction taking place in the mind of some ancient sage should he hear that a cherub--which, according to St. Augustine, signifies the Evangelists; according to Philo Judæus, the outermost circumference of the entire heavens, and according to several of the Church Fathers, the wisdom of God--had sprouted finger nails. The hopeless confusion of divine principles with the allegorical figures created to represent them to the limited faculties of the uninitiated has resulted in the most atrocious misconceptions of spiritual truths. Concepts well-nigh as preposterous as these, however, still stand as adamantine barriers to a true understanding of Old and New Testament symbolism; for, until man disentangles his reasoning powers from the web of venerated absurdities in which his mind has lain ensnared for centuries, how can Truth ever be discovered?

The Old Testament--especially the Pentateuch--contains not only the traditional account of the creation of the world and of man, but also, locked within it, the secrets of the Egyptian initiators of the Moses concerning the genesis of the god-man (the initiate) and the mystery of his rebirth through philosophy. While the Lawgiver of Israel is known to have compiled several works other than those generally attributed to him, the writings now commonly circulated as the purported sixth and seventh books of Moses are in reality spurious treatises on black magic foisted on the credulous during the Middle Ages. Out of the hundreds of millions of pious and thoughtful students of Holy Writ, it is almost inconceivable that but a mere handful have sensed the sublimity of the esoteric teachings of Sod (the Jewish Mysteries of Adonai). Yet familiarity with the three Qabbalistical processes termed Gematria, Notarikon, and Temurah makes possible the discovery of many of the profoundest truths of ancient Jewish superphysics.

By Gematria is meant not only the exchange of letters for their numerical equivalents but also the method of determining by an analysis of its measurements the mystic purpose for which a building or other object was constructed. S. L. MacGregor-Mathers, in The Kabbalah Unveiled, gives this example of the application of Gematria: "Thus also the passage, Gen. xviii. 2 VHNH SHLSHH, Vehenna Shalisha, 'And lo, three men,' equals in numerical value 'ALV MIKAL GBRIAL VRPAL, Elo Mikhael Gabriel Ve-Raphael,' These are Mikhael, Gabriel and Raphael; 'for each phrase = 701." Assuming the sides of a scalene to be 11, 9, and 6 inches, a triangle of such dimensions would then be an appropriate symbol of Jehovah, for the sum of its three sides would be 26, the numerical value of the Hebrew word IHVH. Gematria also includes the system of discovering the arcane meaning of a word by analyzing the size and arrangement of the strokes employed in the formation of its various letters. Gematria was employed by the Greeks as well as the Jews. The books of the New Testament--particularly those attributed to St. John--contain many examples of its use. Nicephorus Callistus declared the Gospel according to St. John to have been discovered in a cavern under the Temple at Jerusalem, the volume having been secreted "long anterior to the Christian æra." The existence of interpolated material in the fourth Gospel substantiates the belief that the work was originally written without any specific reference to the man Jesus, the statements therein accredited to Him being originally mystical discourses delivered by the personification of the Universal Mind. The remaining Johannine writings--the Epistles and the Apocalypse--are enshrouded by a similar veil of mystery.

By Notarikon each letter of a word may become the initial character of a new word. Thus from BRASHITH, first word in the book of Genesis, are extracted six words which mean that "in the beginning the Elohim saw that Israel would accept the law." Mr. MacGregor-Mathers also gives six additional examples of Notarikon formed from the above word by Solomon Meir Ben Moses, a mediæval Qabbalist. From the famous acrostic ascribed to the Erythræan Sibyl, St. Augustine derived the word ΙΧΘΥΣ, which by Notarikon was expanded into the phrase, "Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior." By another use of Notarikon, directly the reverse of the first, the initial, last, or middle letters of the words of a sentence may be joined together to form a new word or words. For example, the name Amen, ἁμήν, maybe extracted from ארנימלרנאטז, "the Lord is the faithful King." Because they had embodied these cryptic devices in their sacred writings, the ancient priests admonished their disciples never to translate, edit, or rewrite the contents of the sacred books.

Under the general heading of Temurah several systems may be grouped and explained in which various letters are substituted for other letters according to prearranged tables or certain mathematical arrangements of letters, regular or irregular. Thus the alphabet may be broken into two equal parts and written in horizontal lines so that the letters of the lower row can be exchanged for those of the upper row, or vice versa. By this procedure the letters of the word Kuzu may be exchanged for those of IHVH, the Tetragrammaton. In another form of Temurah the letters are merely rearranged., שתיה is the stone which is found in the center of the world, from which point the earth spread out on all sides. When broken in two the stone is שת יה, which means "the placing of God."(See Pekudei Rakov, 71, 72.) Again, Temurah may consist of a simple anagram, as in the English word live, which reversed becomes evil. The various systems of Temurah are among the most complicated and profound devices of the ancient Rabbins.

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THE VISION OF EZEKIEL.
From The "Bear" Bible.
This plate, which is from the first Protestant Bible published in Spanish, shows the Mercavah, or chariot of Jehovah, which appeared to Ezekiel by the river Chebar. The prophet beheld four strange creatures (E), each having four heads, four wings, and brazen hoofs like those of a calf. And there were four wheels (F) filled with eyes. Where the cherubim went the wheels went also. The space between the cherubim and the wheels was filled with coals of fire. Upon the top of the chariot was a throne, upon which sat the likeness of a man (H). Ezekiel fell upon his knees when he beheld the Mercavah surrounded by a whirlwind of clouds and flames (A, B, C). A hand (K) reached out from the clouds and the prophet was ordered to eat of a scroll which the hand held forth.
According to the mystics, the wheels supporting the throne of God represent the orbits of the planets, and the entire solar system is properly the Mercavah, or chariot of God. One of the divisions of the Qabbalah--that dealing with the arts and sciences of those planes which are under the heavens--is called the Mercavah. In the Zohar it is written that the celestial throne or Ezekiel's vision signifies the traditional law; the appearance of a man sitting upon the throne represents the written law, Philo Judæus in describing the cherubim upon the Ark of the Covenant declares that the figures are an intimation of the revolutions of the whole heavens, one of the cherubim representing the outer circumference and the other the inner sphere. Facing each other, they represent the two hemispheres of the world. The flaming sword of the cherubim of Genesis is the central motion and agitation of the heavenly bodies. In all probability it also represents the solar ray.


Among theological scholars there is a growing conviction that the hitherto accepted translations of the Scriptural writings do not adequately express the spirit of the original documents.

"After the first copy of the Book of God," writes H. P. Blavatsky, "has been edited and launched on the world by Hilkiah, this copy disappears, and Ezra has to make a new Bible, which Judas Maccabeus finishes; * * * when it was copied from the horned letters into square letters, it was corrupted beyond recognition; * * * the Masorah completed the work of destruction; finally, we have a text, not 900 years old, abounding with omissions, interpolations, and premeditated perversions." (See Isis Unveiled.)

Prof. Crawford Howell Toy of Harvard notes: "Manuscripts were copied and recopied by scribes who not only sometimes made errors in letters and words, but permitted themselves to introduce new material into the text, or to combine in one manuscript, without mark of division, writings composed by different men; instances of these sorts of procedure are found especially in Micah and Jeremiah, and the groups of prophecies which go under the names of Isaiah and Zachariah." (See Judaism and Christianity.)

Does the mutilated condition of the Holy Bible--in part accidental--represent none the less a definite effort to confuse the uninitiated reader and thus better conceal the secrets of the Jewish Tannaim? Never has the Christian world been in possession of those hidden scrolls which contain the secret doctrine of Israel, and if the Qabbalists were correct in their assumption that the lost books of the Mosaic Mysteries have been woven into the fabric of the Torah, then the Scriptures are veritably books within books. In rabbinical circles the opinion is prevalent that Christendom never has understood the Old Testament and probably never will. In fact, the feeling exists--in some quarters, at least--that the Old Testament is the exclusive possession of the Jewish faith; also that Christianity, after its unrelenting persecution of the Jew, takes unwarranted liberties when it includes strictly Jewish writings in its sacred canon. But, as noted by one rabbi, if Christianity must use the Jewish Scriptures, it should at least strive to do so with some degree of intelligence!

In the opening chapter of Genesis it is stated that after creating light and separating it from darkness, the seven Elohim divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament. Having thus established the inferior universe in perfect accord with the esoteric teachings of the Hindu, Egyptian, and Greek Mysteries, the Elohim next turned their attention to the production of flora and fauna and lastly man. "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. * * * So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, * * *."

Consider in thoughtful silence the startling use of pronouns in the above extract from "the most perfect example of English literature." When the plural and androgynous Hebrew word Elohim was translated into the singular and sexless word God, the opening chapters of Genesis were rendered comparatively meaningless. It may have been feared that had the word been correctly translated as "the male and female creative agencies," the Christians would have been justly accused of worshiping a plurality of gods in the face of their repeated claims to monotheism! The plural form of the pronouns us and our reveals unmistakably, however, the pantheistic nature of Divinity. Further, the androgynous constitution of the Elohim (God) is disclosed in the next verse, where he (referring to God) is said to have created man in his own image, male and female; or, more properly, as the division of the sexes had not yet taken place, male-female. This is a deathblow to the time-honored concept that God is a masculine potency as portrayed by Michelangelo on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The Elohim then order these androgynous beings to be fruitful. Note that neither the masculine nor the feminine principle as yet existed in a separate state! And, lastly, note the word "replenish." The prefix re denotes "back to an original or former state or position," or "repetition or restoration." (See Webster's International Dictionary, 1926.) This definite reference to a humanity existing prior to the "creation of man" described in Genesis must be evident to the most casual reader of Scripture.

An examination of Bible dictionaries, encyclopedias, and commentaries discloses the plural form of the word Elohim to be beyond the comprehension of their respected authors and editors. The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge thus sums up the controversy over the plural form of the word Elohim: "Does it now or did it originally signify plurality of divine being?" A Dictionary of the Bible, edited by James Hastings, contains the following conclusion, which echoes the sentiments of more critical etymologists of the Bible: "The use of the plur. Elohim is also difficult to explain." Dr. Havernick considers the plural form Elohim to signify the abundance and super-richness existing in the Divine Being. His statement, which appears in The Popular and Critical Bible Encyclopædia, is representative of the efforts made to circumvent this extremely damaging word. The International Standard Bible Dictionary considers the explanations offered by modern theologians--of which Dr. Havernick's is a fair example--to be too ingenious to have been conceived by the early Hebrews and maintains that the word represents the survival of a polytheistic stage of Semitic thought. The Jewish Encyclopedia supports the latter assumption with the following concise statement: "As far as epigraphic material, traditions, and folk-lore throw light on the question, the Semites are shown to be of polytheistic leanings."

Various schools of philosophy, both Jewish and Gentile, have offered explanations erudite and otherwise of the identity of Adam. In this primordial man the Neo-Platonists recognized the Platonic Idea of humanity--the archetype or pattern of the genus homo. Philo Judæus considered Adam to represent the human mind, which could understand (and hence give names to) the creatures about it, but could not comprehend (and hence left nameless) the mystery of its own nature. Adam was also likened to the Pythagorean monad which by virtue of its state of perfect unity could dwell in the Edenic sphere. When through a process akin to fission the monad became the duad--the proper symbol of discord and delusion--the creature thus formed was exiled from its celestial home. Thus the twofold man was driven from the Paradise belonging to the undivided creation and cherubim and a flaming sword were placed on guard at the gates of the Causal World. Consequently, only after the reestablishment of unity within himself can man regain his primal spiritual state.

According to the Isarim, the secret doctrine of Israel taught the existence of four Adams, each dwelling in one of the four Qabbalistic worlds. The first, or heavenly, Adam dwelt alone in the Atziluthic sphere and within his nature existed all spiritual and material potentialities. The second Adam resided in the sphere of Briah. Like the first Adam, this being was androgynous and the tenth division of its body (its heel, Malchuth) corresponded to the church of Israel that shall bruise the serpent's head. The third Adam--likewise androgynous--was clothed in a body of light and abode in the sphere of Yetzirah. The fourth Adam was merely the third Adam after the fall into the sphere of Assiah, at which time the spiritual man took upon himself the animal shell or coat of skins. The fourth Adam was still considered as a single individual, though division had taken place within his nature and two shells or physical bodies existed, in one of which was incarnated the masculine and in the other the feminine potency. (For further details consult Isaac Myer.)

The universal nature of Adam is revealed in the various accounts concerning the substances of which he was formed. It was originally ordained that the "dirt" to be used in fashioning him was to be derived from the seven worlds. As these planes, however, refused to give of their substances, the Creator wrenched from them by force the elements to be employed in the Adamic constitution. St. Augustine discovered a Notarikon in the name of Adam. He showed that the four letters, A-D-A-M, are the first letters of the four words Anatole Dysis Arktos Mesembria, the Greek names for the four corners of the world. The same author also sees in Adam a prototype of Christ, for he writes: "Adam sleeps that Eve may be formed: Christ dies, that the Church may be formed. While Adam sleeps, Eve is formed from his side. When Christ is dead, His side is smitten with a spear, that there flow forth sacraments to form the church. * * * Adam himself was the figure of Him that was to come."

In his recent work, Judaism, George Foote Moore thus describes the proportions of the Adamic man: "He was a huge mass that filled the whole world to all the points of the compass. The dust of which his body was formed was gathered from every part of the world, or from the site of the future altar. Of greater interest is the notion that man was created androgynous, because it is probably a bit of foreign lore adapted to the first pair in Genesis. R. Samuel bar Nahman (third century), said, when God created Adam, He created him facing both ways (דיו פרעופים); then He sawed him in two and made two backs, one for each figure.

The Zohar holds the concept of two Adams: the first a divine being who, stepping forth from the highest original darkness, created the second, or earthly, Adam in His own image. The higher, or celestial, man was the Causal sphere With its divine potencies and potentialities considered as a gigantic personality; its members, according to the Gnostics, being the basic elements of existence. This Adam may have been symbolized as facing both ways to signify that with one face it looked upon the proximate Cause of itself and with the other face looked upon the vast sea of Cosmos into which it was to be immersed.

Philosophically, Adam may be regarded as representative of the full spiritual nature of man--androgynous and nor subject to decay. Of this fuller nature the mortal man has little comprehension. Just as spirit contains matter within itself and is both the source and ultimate of the state denominated matter, so Eve represents the lower, or mortal, portion that is taken out of, or has temporal existence in the greater and fuller spiritual creation. Being representative of the inferior part of the individual, Eve is the temptress who, conspiring with the serpent of mortal knowledge, caused Adam to sink into a trancelike condition in which he was unconscious of his own higher Self. When Adam seemingly awoke, he actually sank into sleep, for he no longer was in the spirit but in the body; division having taken place within him, the true Adam rested in Paradise while his lesser part incarnated in a material organism (Eve) and wandered in the darkness of mortal existence.

The followers of Mohammed apparently sensed more accurately than the uninitiated of other sects the true mystic import of Paradise, for they realized that prior to his fall the dwelling place of man was not in a physical garden in any particular part of the earth but rather in a higher sphere (the angelic world) watered by four mystical streams of life. After his banishment from Paradise, Adam alighted on the Island of Ceylon, and this spot is sacred to certain Hindu sects who recognize the old Island of Lanka--once presumably connected with the mainland by a bridge--as the actual site of the Garden of Eden from which the human race migrated. According to the Arabian Nights (Sir Richard Burton's translation), Adam's footprint may still be seen on the top of a Ceylonese mountain. In the Islamic legends, Adam was later reunited with his wife and after his death his body was brought to Jerusalem subsequent to the Flood for burial by Melchizedek. (See the Koran.)

The word ADM signifies a species or race and only for lack of proper understanding has Adam been considered as an individual. As the Macrocosm, Adam is the gigantic Androgyne, even the Demiurgus; as the Microcosm, he is the chief production of the Demiurgus and within the nature of the Microcosm the Demiurgus established all the qualities and powers which He Himself possessed. The Demiurgus, however, did not possess immortality and, therefore, could not bestow it upon Adam. According to legend, the Demiurgus strove to keep man from learning the incompleteness of his Maker. The Adamic man consequently partook of the qualities and characteristics of the angels who were the ministers of the Demiurgus. It was affirmed by the Gnostic Christians that the redemption of humanity was assured through the descent of Nous (Universal Mind), who was a great spiritual being superior to the Demiurgus and who, entering into the constitution of man, conferred conscious immortality upon the Demiurgic fabrications.

That phallic symbolism occupies an important place in early Jewish mysticism is indisputable. Hargrave Jennings sees in the figure of Adam a type of the lingam of Shiva, which was a stone representative of the creative power of the World Generator. "In Gregorie's works * * *," writes Jennings, "is a passage to the effect that 'Noah daily prayed in the Ark before the Body of Adam,' i.e., before the Phallus--Adam being the primitive Phallus, great procreator of the human race. 'It may possibly seem strange,' he says, 'that this orison should be daily said before the body of Adam,' but 'it is a most confessed tradition among the eastern men that Adam was commanded by God that his dead body should be kept above ground till a fullness of time should come to commit it פדככאלאועto the middle of the earth by a priest of the Most High God.' This means Mount Moriah, the Meru of India. 'This body of Adam was embalmed and transmitted from father to son, till at last it was delivered up by Lamech into the hands of Noah.'" (See Phallicism.)

This interpretation somewhat clarifies the Qabbalistic assertion that in the first Adam were contained all the souls of the Israelites. (See Sod.) Though according to the Aurea Legenda Adam was buried with the three seeds of the Tree of Knowledge in his mouth, it should be borne in mind that apparently conflicting myths were often woven around a single individual. One of the profound mysteries of Qabbalism is that set forth in the Notarikon based upon the letters of the name Adam (ADM). These three letters form the initials of the names Adam, David, and the Messiah, and these three personalities were said to contain one soul. As this soul represents the World Soul of humanity, Adam signifies the involving soul, the Messiah the evolving soul, and David that condition of the soul termed epigenesis.

In common with certain philosophic institutions of Asia, the Jewish Mysteries contained a strange doctrine concerning the shadows of the Gods. Gazing down into the Abyss, the Elohim beheld their own shadows and from these shadows patterned the inferior creation. "In the dramatic representation of the creation of man in the Mysteries," writes the anonymous Master of Balliol College, "the Aleim [Elohim] were represented by men who, when sculpturing the form of an Adamite being, of a man, traced the outline of it on their own shadow, or modelled it on their own shadow traced on the wall. This is how the art of drawing originated in Egypt, and the hieroglyphic figures carved on the Egyptian monuments have so little relief that they still resemble a shadow."

In the ritualism of the early Jewish Mysteries the pageantry of creation was enacted, the various actors impersonating the Creative Agencies. The red dirt from which the Adamic man was fashioned may signify fire, particularly since Adam is related to the Yod, or fire flame, which is the first letter of the sacred name Jehovah. In John ii. 20 it is written that the Temple was forty and six years in the building, a statement in which St. Augustine sees a secret and sacred Gematria; for, according to the Greek philosophy of numbers, the numerical value of the name Adam is 46. Adam thus becomes the type of the Temple, for the House of God-like primitive man--was a microcosm or epitome of the universe.

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NOAH AND HIS ZODIACAL ARK.
From Myer's Qabbalah.
The early Church Father--notably Tertullian, Firmilian, St. Cyprian, St. Augustine, and St. Chrysostom--recognized in the ark a type or symbol of the Holy Catholic Church. Bede the Venerable, declared that Noah in all things typified Christ as Noah alone of his generation was just, so Christ alone was without sin. With Christ there was a sevenfold spirit of grace: with Noah seven righteous Persons. Noah by water and wood saved his own family Christ by baptism and the cross saves Christians. The ark was built of wood that did not decay. the church is composed of men who will live forever, for this ark means the church which floats upon the waves of the world.
The diagram shown above is also reproduced in The Rosicrucians, by Hargrave Jennings. This author adds to the original diagram appearing in Antiquitatum Judaicarum Libri IX the signs of the zodiac, placing Aries at the head and continuing in sequential order to Leo, which occupies the fifth cross section of the ark. Jennings assigns the panel containing the door to the undivided constellation of Virgo-Libra-Scorpio (which is continued into the first subdivision of the second section) and the remaining four cress sections to the constellations of Sagittarius to Pisces inclusive. A study of the plate discloses the ark to be divided into eleven main sections, and along the base and roof of each section are shown three subdivisions, thus making in all the sacred number 33. Occupying the position corresponding to the generative system of the human body will also be noted the cross upon the door of the central section. Two openings are shown in the ark: one--the main door representing the orifice through which the animal lives descend into physical existence; the other a small window proximate to the crown of the head through which the spirit gains liberty according to the ancient rites.
"When the androgenic Scorpio-Virgo was separated and the Balance or Harmony made from Scorpio, and placed between Scorpio, i.e., male, and Virgo, i.e., female, then appeared the 32 constellations or signs, as we now have them. The ark is three stories high (perhaps to symbolize Heaven, Man, Earth). In the figure of the Man, notice the parting of the hair in the middle of the forehead and the arrangement of the beard, whiskers, moustache and the hair, on the back of the neck and shoulders." (See The Qabbalah by Isaac Myer.)


In the Mysteries, Adam is accredited with having the peculiar power of spiritual generation. Instead of reproducing his kind by the physical generative processes, he caused to issue from himself--or, more correctly, to be reflected upon substance--a shadow of himself. This shadow he then ensouled and it became a living creature. These shadows, however, remain only as long as the original figure of which they are the reflections endures, for with the removal of the original the host of likenesses vanish with it. Herein is the key to the allegorical creation of Eve out of the side of Adam; for Adam, representative of the idea or pattern, is reflected into the material universe as a multitude of ensouled images which collectively are designated Eve. According to another theory, the division of the sexes took place in the archetypal sphere; hence the shadows in the lower world were divided into two classes consistent with the orders established in the Archetype. In the apparently incomprehensible attraction of one sex for the other Plato recognized a cosmic urge toward reunion of the severed halves of this archetypal Being.

Exactly what is to be inferred by the division of the sexes as symbolically described in Genesis is a much-debated question. That man was primarily androgynous is quite universally conceded and it is a reasonable presumption that he will ultimately regain this bisexual state. As to the manner in which this will be accomplished two opinions are advanced. One school of thought affirms that the human soul was actually divided into two parts (male and female) and that man remains an unperfected creature until these parts are reunited through the emotion which man calls love. From this concept has grown the much-abused doctrine of "soul mates" who must quest through the ages until the complementary part of each severed soul is discovered. The modern concept of marriage is to a certain degree founded upon this ideal.

According to the other school, the so-called division of the sexes resulted from suppression of one pole of the androgynous being in order that the vital energies manifesting through it might be diverted to development of the rational faculties. From this point of view man is still actually androgynous and spiritually complete, but in the material world the feminine part of man's nature and the masculine part of woman's nature are quiescent. Through spiritual unfoldment and knowledge imparted by the Mysteries, however, the latent element in each nature is gradually brought into activity and ultimately the human being thus regains sexual equilibrium. By this theory woman is elevated from the position of being man's errant part to one of complete equality. From this point of view, marriage is regarded as a companionship in which two complete individualities manifesting opposite polarities are brought into association that each may thereby awaken the qualities latent in the other and thus assist in the attainment of individual completeness. The first theory may be said to regard marriage as an end; the second as a means to an end. The deeper schools of philosophy have leaned toward the latter as more adequately acknowledging the infinite potentialities of divine completeness in both aspects of creation.

The Christian Church is fundamentally opposed to the theory of marriage, claiming that the highest degree of spirituality is achievable only by those preserving the virginal state. This concept seemingly originated among certain sects of the early Gnostic Christians, who taught that to propagate the human species was to increase and perpetuate the power of the Demiurgus; for the lower world was looked upon as an evil fabrication created to ensnare the souls of all born into it--hence it was a crime to assist in bringing souls to earth. When, therefore, the unfortunate father or mother shall stand before the Final Tribunal, all their offspring will also appear and accuse them of being the cause of those miseries attendant upon physical existence. This view is strengthened by the allegory of Adam and Eve, whose sin through which humanity has been brought low is universally admitted to have been concerned with the mystery of generation. Mankind, owing to Father Adam its physical existence, regards its progenitor as the primary cause of its misery; and in the judgment Day, rising up as a mighty progeny, will accuse its common paternal ancestor.

Those Gnostic sects maintaining a more rational attitude on the subject declared the very existence of the lower worlds to signify that the Supreme Creator had a definite purpose in their creation; to doubt his judgment was, therefore, a grievous error. The church, however, seemingly arrogated to itself the astonishing prerogative of correcting God in this respect, for wherever possible it continued to impose celibacy, a practice resulting in an alarming number of neurotics. In the Mysteries, celibacy is reserved for those who have reached a certain degree of spiritual unfoldment. When advocated for the mass of unenlightened humanity, however, it becomes a dangerous heresy, fatal alike to both religion and philosophy. As Christendom in its fanaticism has blamed every individual Jew for the crucifixion of Jesus, so with equal consistency it has maligned every member of the feminine sex. In vindication of Eve philosophy claims that the allegory signifies merely that man is tempted by his emotions to depart from the sure path of reason.

Many of the early Church Fathers sought to establish a direct relationship between Adam and Christ, thereby obviously discounting the extremely sinful nature of man's common ancestor, since it is quite certain that when St. Augustine likens Adam to Christ and Eve to the church he does not intend to brand the latter institution as the direct cause of the fall of man. For some inexplicable reason, however, religion has ever regarded intellectualism--in fact every form of knowledge--as fatal to man's spiritual growth. The Ignaratitine Friars are an outstanding example of this attitude.

In this ritualistic drama--possibly derived from the Egyptians--Adam, banished from the Garden of Eden, represents man philosophically exiled from the sphere of Truth. Through ignorance man falls; through wisdom he redeems himself. The Garden of Eden represents the House of the Mysteries (see The Vision of Enoch) in the midst of which grew both the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

Man, the banished Adam, seeks to pass from the outer court of the Sanctuary (the exterior universe) into the sanctum sanctorum, but before him rises a vast creature armed with a flashing sword that, moving slowly but continually, sweeps clear a wide circle, and through this "Ring Pass Not" the Adamic man cannot break.

The cherubim address the seeker thus: "Man, thou art dust and to dust thou shalt return. Thou wert fashioned by the Builder of Forms; thou belongest to the sphere of form, and the breath that was breathed into thy soul was the breath of form and like a flame it shall flicker out. More than thou art thou canst not be. Thou art a denizen of the outer world and it is forbidden thee to enter this inner place."

And the Adam replies: "Many times have I stood within this courtyard and begged admission to my Father's house and thou hast refused it me and sent me back to wander in darkness. True it is that I was fashioned out of the dirt and that my Maker could not confer upon me the boon of immortality. But no more shalt thou send me away; for, wandering in the darkness, I have discovered that the Almighty hath decreed my salvation because He hath sent out of the most hidden Mystery His Only Begotten who didst take upon Himself the world fashioned by the Demiurgus. Upon the elements of that world was He crucified and from Him hath poured forth the blood of my salvation. And God, entering into His creation, hath quickened it and established therein a road that leadeth to Himself. While my Maker could not give me immortality, immortality was inherent in the very dust of which I was composed, for before the world was fabricated and before the Demiurgus became the Regent of Nature the Eternal Life had impressed itself upon the face of Cosmos. This is its sign--the Cross. Do you now deny me entrance, I who have at last learned the mystery of myself?"

And the voice replies: "He who is aware, IS! Behold!"

Gazing about him, Adam finds himself in a radiant place, in the midst of which stands a tree with flashing jewels for fruit and entwined about its trunk a flaming, winged serpent crowned with a diadem of stars. It was the voice of the serpent that had spoken.

"Who art thou?" demands the Adam.

"I," the serpent answers, "am Satan who was stoned; I am the Adversary--the Lord who is against you, the one who pleads for your destruction before the Eternal Tribunal. I was your enemy upon the day that you were formed; I have led you into temptation; I have delivered you into the hands of evil; I have maligned you; I have striven ever to achieve your undoing. I am the guardian of the Tree of Knowledge and I have sworn that none whom I can lead astray shall partake of its fruits."

The Adam replies: "For uncounted ages have I been thy servant. In my ignorance I listened to thy words and they led me into paths of sorrow. Thou hast placed in my mind dreams of power, and when I struggled to realize those dreams they brought me naught but pain. Thou hast sowed in me the seeds of desire, and when I lusted after the things of the flesh agony was my only recompense. Thou hast sent me false prophets and false reasoning, and when I strove to grasp the magnitude of Truth I found thy laws were false and only dismay rewarded my strivings. I am done with thee forever, O artful Spirit! I have tired of thy world of illusions. No longer will I labor in thy vineyards of iniquity. Get thee behind me, rempter, and the host of thy temptations. There is no happiness, no peace, no good, no future in the doctrines of selfishness, hate, and passion preached by thee. All these things do I cast aside. Renounced is thy rule forever!"

And the serpent makes answer: "Behold, O Adam, the nature of thy Adversary!" The serpent disappears in a blinding sunburst of radiance and in its place stands an angel resplendent in shining, golden garments with great scarlet wings that spread from one corner of the heavens to the other. Dismayed and awestruck, the Adam falls before the divine creature.

"I am the Lord who is against thee and thus accomplishes thy salvation, " continues the voice. "Thou hast hated me, but through the ages yet to be thou shalt bless me, for I have led thee our of the sphere of the Demiurgus; I have turned thee against the illusion of worldliness; I have weaned thee of desire; I have awakened in thy soul the immortality of which I myself partake. Follow me, O Adam, for I am the Way, the Life, and the Truth!"
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 12:43 am

An Analysis of Tarot Cards

OPINIONS of authorities differ widely concerning the origin of playing cards, the purpose for which they were intended, and the time of their introduction into Europe. In his Researches into the History of Playing Cards, Samuel Weller Singer advances the opinion that cards reached Southern Europe from India by way of Arabia. It is probable that the Tarot cards were part of the magical and philosophical lore secured by the Knights Templars from the Saracens or one of the mystical sects then flourishing in Syria. Returning to Europe, the Templars, to avoid persecution, concealed the arcane meaning of the symbols by introducing the leaves of their magical book ostensibly as a device for amusement and gambling. In support of this contention, Mrs. John King Van Rensselaer states:

"That cards were brought by the home-returning warriors, who imported many of the newly acquired customs and habits of the Orient to their own countries, seems to be a well-established fact; and it does not contradict the statement made by some writers who declared that the gypsies--who about that time began to wander over Europe--brought with them and introduced cards, which they used, as they do at the present day, for divining the future." (See The Devil's Picture Books.)

Through the Gypsies the Tarot cards may be traced back to the religious symbolism of the ancient Egyptians. In his remarkable work, The Gypsies, Samuel Roberts presents ample proof of their Egyptian origin. In one place he writes: "When Gypsies originally arrived in England is very uncertain. They are first noticed in our laws, by several statutes against them in the reign of Henry VIII.; in which they are described as 'an outlandish people, calling themselves Egyptians,--who do not profess any craft or trade, but go about in great numbers, * * *.'" A curious legend relates that after the destruction of the Serapeum in Alexandria, the large body of attendant priests banded themselves together to preserve the secrets of the rites of Serapis. Their descendants (Gypsies) carrying with them the most precious of the volumes saved from the burning library--the Book of Enoch, or Thoth (the Tarot)--became wanderers upon the face of the earth, remaining a people apart with an ancient language and a birthright of magic and mystery.

Court de Gébelin believed the word Tarot itself to be derived from two Egyptian words, Tar, meaning "road," and Ro, meaning "royal." Thus the Tarot constitutes the royal road to wisdom. (See Le Monde Primitif.) In his History of Magic, P. Christian, the mouthpiece of a certain French secret society, presents a fantastic account of a purported initiation into the Egyptian Mysteries wherein the 22 major Tarots assume the proportions of trestleboards of immense size and line a great gallery. Stopping before each card in turn, the initiator described its symbolism to the candidate. Edouard Schuré, whose source of information was similar to that of Christian's, hints at the same ceremony in his chapter on initiation into the Hermetic Mysteries. (See The Great Initiates.) While the Egyptians may well have employed the Tarot cards in their rituals, these French mystics present no evidence other than their own assertions to support this theory. The validity also of the so-called Egyptian Tarots now in circulation has never been satisfactorily established. The drawings are not only quite modem but the symbolism itself savors of French rather than Egyptian influence.

The Tarot is undoubtedly a vital element in Rosicrucian symbolism, possibly the very book of universal knowledge which the members of the order claimed to possess. The Rota Mundi is a term frequently occurring in the early manifestoes of the Fraternity of the Rose Cross. The word Rota by a rearrangement of its letters becomes Taro, the ancient name of these mysterious cards. W. F. C. Wigston has discovered evidence that Sir Francis Bacon employed the Tarot symbolism in his ciphers. The numbers 21, 56, and 78, which are all directly related to the divisions of the Tarot deck, are frequently involved in Bacon's cryptograms. In the great Shakespearian Folio of 1623 the Christian name of Lord Bacon appears 21 times on page 56 of the Histories. (See The Columbus of Literature.)

Many symbols appearing upon the Tarot cards have definite Masonic interest. The Pythagorean numerologist will also find an important relationship to exist between the numbers on the cards and the designs accompanying the numbers. The Qabbalist will be immediately impressed by the significant sequence of the cards, and the alchemist will discover certain emblems meaningless save to one versed in the divine chemistry of transmutation and regeneration.' As the Greeks placed the letters of their alphabet--with their corresponding numbers--upon the various parts of the body of their humanly represented Logos, so the Tarot cards have an analogy not only in the parts and members of the universe but also in the divisions of the human body.. They are in fact the key to the magical constitution of man.

The Tarot cards must be considered (1) as separate and complete hieroglyphs, each representing a distinct principle, law, power, or element in Nature; (2) in relation to each other as the effect of one agent operating upon another; and (3) as vowels and consonants of a philosophic alphabet. The laws governing all phenomena are represented by the symbols upon the Tarot cards, whose numerical values are equal to the numerical equivalents of the phenomena. As every structure consists of certain elemental parts, so the Tarot cards represent the components of the structure of philosophy. Irrespective of the science or philosophy with which the student is working, the Tarot cards can be identified with the essential constituents of his subject, each card thus being related to a specific part according to mathematical and philosophical laws. "An imprisoned person," writes Eliphas Levi, "with no other book than the Tarot, if he knew how to use it, could in a few years acquire universal knowledge, and would be able to speak on all subjects with unequalled learning and inexhaustible eloquence. " (See Transcendental Magic.)

The diverse opinions of eminent authorities on the Tarot symbolism are quite irreconcilable. The conclusions of the scholarly Court de Gébelin and the bizarre Grand Etteila--the first authorities on the subject--not only are at radical variance but both are equally discredited by Levi, whose arrangement of the Tarot trumps was rejected in turn by Arthur Edward Waite and Paul Case as being an effort to mislead students. The followers of Levi--especially Papus, Christian, Westcott, and Schuré-are regarded by the "reformed Tarotists" as honest but benighted individuals who wandered in darkness for lack of Pamela Coleman Smith's new deck of Tarot cards with revisions by Mr. Waite.

Image
EARLY PORTUGUESE CARDS.
From Chatto's Origin and History of Playing Cards.
In writing of the deck from which the four cavaliers (jacks) here reproduced were taken, William Andrew Chatto notes: "Some of the specimens of Portuguese cards given in the 'Jeux de Cartes, Tarots et de Cartes Numérales' have very much the appearance of having been originally suggested by, if net copied from, an Oriental type; more especially in the suits of Danari and Bastani,--Money and Clubs. In those cards the circular figure, generally understood as representing Danari, or Money, is certainly much more like the Chakra, or quoit of Vichnou [Vishnu], as seen in Hindostanic drawings, than a piece of coin; while on the top of the Club is a diamond proper, which is another of the attributes of the same deity." Also worthy of note are the Rosicrucian and Masonic emblems appearing on various mediæval decks. As the secrets of these organizations were often concealed in cryptic engravings, it is very probable that the enigmatic diagrams upon various decks of cards were used both to conceal and to perpetuate the political and philosophical arcana of these orders. The frontispiece of Mr. Chatto's books shows a knave of hearts bearing a shield emblazoned with a crowned Rosicrucian rose.


Most writers on the Tarot (Mr. Waite a notable exception) have proceeded upon the hypothesis that the 22 major trumps represent the letters of the Hebrew alphabet. This supposition is based upon nothing more substantial than the coincidence that both consist of 22 parts. That Postel, St. Martin, and Levi all wrote books divided into sections corresponding to the major Tarots is an interesting sidelight on the subject. The major trump cards portray incidents from the Book of Revelation; and the Apocalypse of St. John is also divided into 22 chapters. Assuming the Qabbalah to hold the solution to the Tarot riddle, seekers have often ignored other possible lines of research. The task, however, of discovering the proper relationship sustained by the Tarot trumps to the letters of the Hebrew alphabet and the Paths of Wisdom thus far has not met with any great measure of success. The major trumps of the Tarot and the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet cannot be synchronized without first fixing the correct place of the unnumbered, or zero, card--Le Mat, the Fool. Levi places this card between the 20th and 21st Tarots, assigning to it the Hebrew letter Shin (ש). The same order is followed by Papus, Christian, and Waite, the last, however, declaring this arrangement to be incorrect. Westcott makes the zero card the 22nd of the Tarot major trumps. On the other hand, both Court de Gébelin and Paul Case place the unnumbered card before the first numbered card of the major trumps, for if the natural order of the numbers (according to either the Pythagorean or Qabbalistic system) be adhered to, the zero card must naturally precede the number 1.

This does not dispose of the problem, however, for efforts to assign a Hebrew letter to each Tarot trump in sequence produce an effect far from convincing. Mr. Waite, who reedited the Tarot, expresses himself thus: "I am not to be included among those who are satisfied that there is a valid correspondence between Hebrew letters and Tarot Trump symbols." (See introduction to The Book of Formation by Knut Stenring.) The real explanation may be that the major Tarots no longer are in the same sequence as when they formed the leaves of Hermes' sacred book, for the Egyptians--or even their Arabian successors--could have purposely confused the cards so that their secrets might be better preserved. Mr. Case has developed a system which, while superior to most, depends largely upon two debatable points, namely, the accuracy of Mr. Waite's revised Tarot and the justification for assigning the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet to the unnumbered, or zero, card. Since Aleph (the first Hebrew letter) has the numerical value of 1, its assignment to the zero card is equivalent to the statement that zero is equal to the letter Aleph and therefore synonymous with the number 1.

With rare insight, Court de Gébelin assigned the zero card to AIN SOPH, the Unknowable First Cause. As the central panel of the Bembine Table represents the Creative Power surrounded by seven triads of manifesting divinities, so may the zero card represent that Eternal Power of which the 21 surrounding or manifesting aspects are but limited expressions. If the 21 major trumps be considered as limited forms existing in the abstract substance of the zero card, it then becomes their common denominator. Which letter, then, of the Hebrew alphabet is the origin of all the remaining letters? The answer is apparent: Yod. In the presence of so many speculations, one more may not offend. The zero card--Le Mat, the Fool--has been likened to the material universe because the mortal sphere is the world of unreality. The lower universe, like the mortal body of man, is but a garment, a motley costume, well likened to cap and bells. Beneath the garments of the fool is the divine substance, however, of which the jester is but a shadow; this world is a Mardi Gras--a pageantry of divine sparks masked in the garb of fools. Was not this zero card (the Fool) placed in the Tarot deck to deceive all who could not pierce the veil of illusion?

The Tarot cards were entrusted by the illumined hierophants of the Mysteries into the keeping of the foolish and the ignorant, thus becoming playthings--in many instances even instruments of vice. Man's evil habits therefore actually became the unconscious perpetuators of his philosophical precepts. "We must admire the wisdom of the Initiates," writes Papus, "who utilized vice and made it produce more beneficial results than virtue." Does not this act of the ancient priests itself afford proof that the entire mystery of the Tarot is wrapped up in the symbolism of its zero card? If knowledge was thus entrusted to fools, should it not be sought for in this card?

If Le Mat be placed before the first card of the Tarot deck and the others laid out in a horizontal line in sequence from left to right, it will be found that the Fool is walking toward the other trumps as though about to pass through the various cards. Like the spiritually hoodwinked and bound neophyte, Le Mat is about to enter upon the supreme adventure--that of passage through the gates of the Divine Wisdom. If the zero card be considered as extraneous to the major trumps, this destroys the numerical analogy between these cards and the Hebrew letters by leaving one letter without a Tarot correspondent. In this event it will be necessary to assign the missing letter to a hypothetical Tarot card called the elements, assumed to have been broken up to form the 56 cards of the minor trumps. It is possible that each of the major trumps may be subject to a similar division.

The first numbered major trump is called Le Bateleur, the juggler, and according to Court de Gébelin, indicates the entire fabric of creation to be but a dream, existence a juggling of divine elements, and life a perpetual game of hazard. The seeming miracles of Nature are but feats of cosmic legerdemain. Man is like the little ball in the hands of the juggler, who waves his wand and, presto! the ball vanishes. The world looking on does not realize that the vanished article is still cleverly concealed by the juggler in the hollow of his hand. This is also the Adept whom Omar Khayyám calls "the master of the show." His message is that the wise direct the phenomena of Nature and are never deceived thereby.

The magician stands behind a table on which are spread out a number of objects, prominent among them a cup--the Holy Grail and the cup placed by Joseph in Benjamin's sack; a coin--the tribute money and the wages of a Master Builder, and a sword, that of Goliath and also the mystic blade of the philosopher which divides the false from the true. The magician's hat is in the form of the cosmic lemniscate, signifying the first motion of creation. His right hand points to the earth, his left holds aloft the rod of Jacob and also the staff that budded--the human spine crowned with the globe of creative intelligence. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the magician wears an uræus or golden band around his forehead, the table before him is in the form of a perfect cube, and his girdle is the serpent of eternity devouring its own tail.

The second numbered major trump is called La Papesse, the Female Pope, and has been associated with a curious legend of the only woman who ever sat in the pontifical chair. Pope Joan is supposed to have accomplished this by masquerading in malt attire, and was stoned to death when her subterfuge was discovered. This card portrays a seated woman crowned with a tiara surmounted by a lunar crescent. In her lap is the Tora, or book of the Law (usually partly closed), and in her left hand are the keys to the secret doctrine, one gold and the other silver. Behind her rise two pillars (Jachin and Boaz) with a multicolored veil stretched between. Her throne stands upon a checker-hoard floor. A figure called Juno is occasionally substituted for La Papesse. like the female hierophant of the Mysteries of Cybele, this symbolic figure personifies the Shekinah, or Divine Wisdom. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the priestess is veiled, a reminder that the full countenance truth is not revealed to uninitiated man. A veil also covers one-half of her book, thus intimating that but one-half of the mystery of being can be comprehended.

The third numbered major trump is called L'Impératrice, the Empress, and has been likened to the "woman clothed with the sun" described in the Apocalypse. On this card appears the winged figure of a woman seated upon a throne, supporting with her right hand a shield emblazoned with a phœnix and holding in her left a scepter surmounted by an orb or trifoliate flower. Beneath her left foot is sometimes shown the crescent. Either the Empress is crowned or her head is surrounded by a diadem of stars; sometimes both. She is called Generation, and represents the threefold spiritual world out of which proceeds the fourfold material world. To the graduate of the College of the Mysteries she is the Alma Mater out of whose body the initiate has "born again." In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the Empress is shown seated upon a cube filled with eyes and a bird is balanced upon the forefinger other left hand. The upper part of her body is surrounded by a radiant golden nimbus. Being emblematic of the power from which emanates the entire tangible universe, L'Impératrice is frequently symbolized as pregnant.

The fourth numbered major trump is called L'Empereur, the Emperor, and by its numerical value is directly associated with the great Deity revered by the Pythagoreans under the form of the tetrad. His symbols declare the Emperor to be the Demiurgus, the Great King of the inferior world. The Emperor is dressed in armor and his throne is a cube stone, upon which a phœnix is also clearly visible. The king has his legs crossed in a most significant manner and carries either a scepter surmounted by an orb or a scepter in his right hand and an orb n his left. The orb itself is evidence that he is supreme ruler of the world. Upon his right and left breasts respectively appear the symbols of the sun and moon, which in symbolism are referred to as the eyes of the Great King. The position of the body and legs forms the symbol of sulphur, the sign of the ancient alchemical monarch. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the figure is in profile. He wears a Masonic apron and the skirt forms s right-angled triangle. Upon his head is the Crown of the North and his forehead is adorned wit the coiled uræus.

The fifth numbered major trump is called Le Pape, the Pope, and represents the high priest of a pagan or Christian Mystery school. In this card the hierophant wears the tiara and carries in his left hand the triple cross surmounting the globe of the world. His right hand, bearing upon its back the stigmata, makes "the ecclesiastic sign of esotericism," and before him kneel two suppliants or acolytes. The back of the papal throne is in the form of a celestial and a terrestrial column. This card signifies the initiate or master of the mystery of life and according to the Pythagoreans, the spiritual physician. The illusionary universe in the form of the two figures (polarity) kneels before the throne upon which sits the initiate who has elevated his consciousness to the plane of spiritual understanding and reality. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the Master wears the uræus. A white and a black figure--life and death, light and darkness, good and evil--kneel before him. The initiate's mastery over unreality is indicated by the tiara and the triple cross, emblems of rulership over the three worlds which have issued from the Unknowable First Cause.

The sixth numbered major trump is called L'Amoureux, the Lovers. There are two distinct forms of this Tarot. One shows a marriage ceremony in which a priest is uniting a youth and a maiden (Adam and Eve?) in holy wedlock. Sometimes a winged figure above transfixes the lovers with his dart. The second form of the card portrays a youth with a female figure on either side. One of these figures wears a golden crown and is winged, while the other is attired in the flowing robes of the bacchante and on her head is a wreath of vine leaves. The maidens represent the twofold soul of man (spiritual and animal), the first his guardian angel and the second his ever-present demon. The youth stands at the beginning of mature life, "the Parting of the Ways," where he must choose between virtue and vice, the eternal and the temporal. Above, in a halo of light, is the genius of Fate (his star), mistaken for Cupid by the uninformed. If youth chooses unwisely, the arrow of blindfolded Fate will transfix him. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the arrow of the genius points directly to the figure of vice, thereby signifying that the end of her path is destruction. This card reminds man that the price of free will--or, more correctly, the power of choice--is responsibility.

The seventh numbered major trump is called Le Chariot, the Chariot, and portrays a victorious warrior crowned and riding in a chariot drawn by black and white sphinxes or horses. The starry canopy of the chariot is upheld by four columns. This card signifies the Exalted One who rides in the chariot of creation. The vehicle of the solar energy being numbered seven reveals the arcane truth that the seven planers are the chariots of the solar power which rides victorious in their midst. The four columns supporting the canopy represent the four Mighty Ones who uphold the worlds represented by the star-strewn drapery. The figure carries the scepter of the solar energy and its shoulders are ornamented with lunar crescents--the Urim. and Thummim. The sphinxes drawing the chariot resent the secret and unknown power by which the victorious ruler is moved continuously through the various parts of his universe. In certain Tarot decks the victor signifies the regenerated man, for the body of the chariot is a cubic stone. The man in armor is not standing in the chariot but is rising out of the cube, thus typifying the ascension of the 3 out of the 4--the turning upward of the flap of the Master Mason's apron. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the warrior carries the curved sword of Luna, is bearded to signify maturity, and wears the collar of the planetary orbits. His scepter (emblematic of the threefold universe) is crowned with a square upon which is a circle surmounted by a triangle.

The eighth numbered major trump is called La Justice, Justice, and portrays a seated figure upon a throne, the back of which rises in the form of two columns. Justice is crowned and carries in her right hand a sword and in her left a pair of scales. This card is a reminder of the judgment of the soul in the hall of Osiris. It teaches that only balanced forces can endure and that eternal justice destroys with the sword that which is unbalanced. Sometimes justice is depicted with a braid of her own hair twisted around her neck in a manner resembling a hangman's knot. This may subtly imply that man is the cause of his own undoing, his actions (symbolized by his hair) being the instrument of his annihilation. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the figure of Justice is raised upon a dais of three steps, for justice can be fully administered only by such as have been elevated to the third degree. Justice is blindfolded, that the visible shall in no way influence its decision. (For reasons he considers beyond his readers' intelligence, Mr. Waite reversed the eighth and eleventh major trumps.)

The ninth numbered major trump is called L'Hermite, the Hermit, and portrays an aged man, robed in a monkish habit and cowl, leaning on a staff. This card was popularly supposed to represent Diogenes in his quest for an honest man. In his right hand the recluse carries a lamp which he partly conceals within the folds of his cape. The hermit thereby personifies the secret organizations which for uncounted centuries have carefully concealed the light of the Ancient Wisdom from the profane. The staff of the hermit is knowledge, which is man's main and only enduring support. Sometimes the mystic rod is divided by knobs into seven sections, a subtle reference to the mystery of the seven sacred centers along the human spine. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the hermit shields the lamp behind a rectangular cape to emphasize the philosophic truth that wisdom, if exposed to the fury of ignorance, would be destroyed like the tiny flame of a lamp unprotected from the storm. Man's bodies form a cloak through which his divine nature is faintly visible like the flame of the partly covered lantern. Through renunciation--the Hermetic life--man attains depth of character and tranquility of spirit.

The tenth numbered major trump is called La Roue de Fortune, the Wheel of Fortune, and portrays a mysterious wheel with eight spokes--the familiar Buddhist symbol of the Cycle of Necessity. To its rim cling Anubis and Typhon--the principles of good and evil. Above sits the immobile sphinx, carrying the sword of Justice and signifying the perfect equilibrium of Universal Wisdom. Anubis is shown rising and Typhon descending; but when Typhon reaches the bottom, evil ascends again, and when Anubis reaches the top good wanes once more. The Wheel of Fortune represents the lower universe as a whole with Divine Wisdom (the sphinx) as the eternal arbiter between good and evil. In India, the chakra, or wheel, is associated with the life centers either of a world or of an individual. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the Sphinx is armed with a javelin, and Typhon is being thrown from the wheel. The vertical columns, supporting the wheel and so placed that but one is visible, represent the axis of the world with the inscrutable sphinx upon its northern pole. Sometimes the wheel with its supports is in a boat upon the water. The water is the Ocean of Illusion, which is the sole foundation of the Cycle of Necessity.

The eleventh numbered major trump is called La Force, Strength, and portrays a girl wearing a hat in the form of a lemniscate, with her hands upon the mouth of an apparently ferocious lion. Considerable controversy exists as to whether the maid is dosing or opening the lion's mouth. Most writers declare her to be closing the jaws of the beast, but a critical inspection conveys the opposite impression. The young woman symbolizes spiritual strength and the lion either the animal world which the girl is mastering or the Secret Wisdom over which she is mistress. The lion also signifies the summer solstice and the girl, Virgo, for when the sun enters this constellation, the Virgin robs the lion of his strength. King Solomon's throne was ornamented with lions and he himself was likened to the king of beasts with the key of wisdom between its teeth. In this sense, the girl may be opening the lion's mouth to find the key contained therein for courage is a prerequisite to the attainment of knowledge. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the symbolism is the same except that the maiden is represented as a priestess wearing an elaborate crown in the form of a bird surmounted by serpents and an ibis.

The twelfth numbered major trump is called Le Pendu, the Hanged Man, an portrays a young man hanging by his left leg from a horizontal beam, the latter supported by two tree trunks from each of which six branches have been removed. The right leg of the youth is crossed in back of the left and his arms are folded behind his back in such a way as to form a cross surmounting a downward pointing triangle. The figure thus forms an inverted symbol of sulphur and, according to Levi, signifies the accomplishment of the magnum opus. In some decks the figure carries under each arm a money bag from which coins are escaping. Popular tradition associates this card with Judas Iscariot, who is said to have gone forth and hanged himself, the money bags representing the payment he received for his crime.

Levi likens the hanged man to Prometheus, the Eternal Sufferer, further declaring that the upturned feet signify the spiritualization of the lower nature. It is also possible that the inverted figure denotes the loss of the spiritual faculties, for the head is below the level of the body. The stumps of the twelve branches are the signs of the zodiac divided into two groups--positive and negative. The picture therefore depicts polarity temporarily triumphant over the spiritual principle of equilibrium. To attain the heights of philosophy, therefore, man must reverse (or invert) the order of his life. He then loses his sense of personal possession because he renounces the rule of gold in favor of the golden rule. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the hanged man is suspended between two palm trees and signifies the Sun God who dies perennially for his world.

The thirteenth numbered major trump is called La Mort, Death, and portrays a reaping skeleton with a great scythe cutting off the heads, hands, and feet rising out of the earth about it. In the course of its labors the skeleton has apparently cut off one of its own feet. Not all Tarot decks show this peculiarity, but this point well emphasizes the philosophic truth that unbalance and destructiveness are synonymous. The skeleton is the proper emblem of the first and supreme Deity because it is the foundation of the body, as the Absolute is the foundation of creation. The reaping skeleton physically signifies death but philosophically that irresistible impulse in Nature which causes every being to be ultimately absorbed into the divine condition in which it existed before the illusionary universe had been manifested. The blade of the scythe is the moon with its crystallizing power. The field in which death reaps is the universe, and the card discloses that all things growing out of the earth shall be cut down and return to earth again.

Kings, Queens, courtesans, and knaves are alike to death, the master of the visible and a parent parts of all creatures. In some Tarot decks death is symbolized as a figure in armor mounted on a white horse which tramples under foot old and young alike. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot a rainbow is seen behind the figure of death, thus signifying that the mortality of the body of itself achieves the immortality of the spirit. Death, though it destroys form, can never destroy life, which continually renews itself. This card is the symbol of the constant renovation of the universe--disintegration that reintegration may follow upon a higher level of expression.

The fourteenth numbered major trump is called La Temperance, Temperance, and portrays an angelic figure with the sun upon her forehead. She carries two urns, one empty and the other full, and continually pours the contents of the upper into the lower, In some Tarot decks the flowing water takes the form of the symbol of Aquarius. Not one drop, however, of the living water is lost in this endless transference between the superior vessel and the inferior. When the lower urn is filled the vases are reversed, thus signifying that life pours first from the invisible into the visible, then from the visible back into the invisible. The spirit controlling this flow is an emissary of the great Jehovah, Demiurgus of the world. The sun, or light cluster, upon the woman's forehead controls the flow of water, which, being drawn upward into the air by the solar rays, descends upon the earth as rain, to drawn up and fall again ad infinitum. Herein is also shown the passage of the human life forces back and forth between positive and negative poles of the creative system. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the symbolism is the same, except that the winged figure is male instead of female. It is surrounded by a solar nimbus and pours water from a golden urn into a silver one, typifying the descent of celestial forces into the sublunary spheres.

The fifteenth numbered major trump is called Le Diable, the Devil, and portrays a creature resembling Pan with the horns of a ram or deer, the arms and body of a man, and the legs and feet of a goat or dragon. The figure stands upon a cubic stone, to a ring in the front of which are chained two satyrs. For a scepter this so-called demon carries a lighted torch or candle. The entire figure is symbolic of the magic powers of the astral light, or universal mirror, in which the divine forces are reflected in an inverted, or infernal, state. The demon is winged like a bar, showing that it pertains to the nocturnal, or shadow inferior sphere. The animal natures of man, in the form of a male and a female elemental, are chained to its footstool. The torch is the false light which guides unillumined souls to their own undoing. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot appears Typhon--a winged creature composed of a hog, a man, a bat, a crocodile, and a hippopotamus--standing in the midst of its own destructiveness and holding aloft the firebrand of the incendiary. Typhon is created by man's own misdeeds, which, turning upon their maker, destroy him.

The sixteenth numbered major trump is called Le Feu du Ciel, the Fire of Heaven, and portrays a tower the battlements of which, in the form of a crown, are being destroyed by a bolt of lightning issuing from the sun. The crown, being considerably smaller than the tower which it surmounts, possibly indicates that its destruction resulted from its insufficiency. The lighting bolt sometimes takes the form of the zodiacal sign of Scorpio, and the tower may be considered a phallic emblem. Two figures are failing from the tower, one in front and the other behind. This Tarot card is popularly associated with the traditional fall of man. The divine nature of humanity is depicted as a tower. When his crown is destroyed, man falls into the lower world and takes upon himself the illusion of materiality. Here also is a key to the mystery of sex. The tower is supposedly filled with gold coins which, showering out in great numbers from the rent made by the lightning bolt, suggesting potential powers. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the tower is a pyramid, its apex shattered by a lightning bolt. Here is a reference to the missing capstone of the Universal House. In support of Levi's contention that this card is connected with the Hebrew letter Ayin, the failing figure in the foreground is similar in general appearance to the sixteenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet.

The seventeenth numbered major trump is called Les Etoiles, the Stars, and portrays a young girl kneeling with one foot in water and the other on and, her body somewhat suggesting the swastika. She has two urns, the contents of which she pours upon the land and sea. Above the girl's head are eight stars, one of which is exceptionally large and bright. Count de Gébelin considers the great star to be Sothis or Sirius; the other seven are the sacred planets of the ancients. He believes the female figure to be Isis in the act of causing the inundations of the Nile which accompanied the rising of the Dog Star. The unclothed figure of Isis may well signify that Nature does not receive her garment of verdure until the rising of the Nile waters releases the germinal life of plants and flowers. The bush and bird (or butterfly) signify the growth and resurrection which accompany the rising of the waters. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the great star contains a diamond composed of a black and white triangle, and the flowering bush is a tall plant with a trifoliate head upon which a butterfly alights. Here Isis is in the form of an upright triangle and the vases have become shallow cups. The elements of water and earth under her feet represent the opposites of Nature sharing impartially in the divine abundance.

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A CARD FROM THE MANTEGNA PACK.
From Taylor's The History of Playing Cards.
Among the more curious examples of playing cards are those of the Mantegna deck. In 1820, a perfect deck of fifty cards brought the then amazing price of eighty pounds. The fifty subjects composing the Mantegna deck, each of which is represented by an appropriate figure, are: (1) A beggar; (2) A page; (3) A goldsmith; (4) A merchant; (5) A gentleman; (6) A knight; (7) The Doge; (8) A king; (9) An emperor, (10) The Pope; (11) Calliope; (12) Urania; (13) Terpsichore; (14) Erato; (15) Polyhymnia; (16) Thalia; (17) Melpomene; (18) Euterpe; (19) Clio; (20) Apollo; (21) Grammar, (22) Logic; (23) Rhetoric; (24) Geometry; (25) Arithmetic; (26) Music, (27) Poetry; (28) Philosophy; (29) Astrology; (30) Theology; (31) Astronomy; (32) Chronology (33) Cosmogony; (34) Temperance; (35) Prudence; (36) Fortitude; (37) Justice; (38) Charity; (39) Fortitude, (40) Faith; (41) the Moon; (42) Mercury; (43) Venus; (45) the Sun; (45) Mars; (46) Jupiter; (47) Saturn; (48) the eighth Sphere; (49) the Primum Mobile; (50) the First Cause. The Qabbalistic significance of these cards is apparent, and it is possible that they have a direct analogy to the fifty gates of light referred to in Qabbalistic writings.


The eighteenth numbered major trump is called La Lune, the Moon, and portrays Luna rising between two towers--one light and the other dark. A dog and a wolf are baying at the rising moon, and in the foreground is a pool of water from which emerges a crawfish. Between the towers a path winds, vanishing in the extreme background. Court de Gébelin sees in this card another reference to the rising of the Nile and states on the authority of Pausanius that the Egyptians believed the inundations of the Nile to result from the tears of the moon goddess which, falling into the river, swelled its flow. These tears are seen dropping from the lunar face. Court de Gébelin also relates the towers to the Pillars of Hercules, beyond which, according to the Egyptians, the luminaries never passed. He notes also that the Egyptians represented the tropics as dogs who as faithful doorkeepers prevented the sun and moon from penetrating too near the poles. The crab or crawfish signifies the retrograde motion of the moon.

This card also refers to the path of wisdom. Man in his quest of reality emerges from the pool of illusion. After mastering the guardians of the gates of wisdom he passes between the fortresses of science and theology and follows the winding path leading to spiritual liberation. His way is faintly lighted by human reason (the moon), which is but a reflection of divine wisdom. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the towers are pyramids, the dogs are black and white respectively, and the moon is partly obscured by clouds. The entire scene suggests the dreary and desolate place in which the Mystery dramas of the Lesser Rites were enacted.

The nineteenth numbered major trump is called Le Soleil, the Sun, and portrays two children--probably Gemini, the Twins--standing together in a garden surrounded by a magic ring of flowers. One of these children should be shown as male and the other female. Behind them is a brick wall apparently enclosing the garden. Above the wall the sun is rising, its rays alternately straight and curved. Thirteen teardrops are falling from the solar face Levi, seeing in the two children Faith and Reason, which must coexist as long as the temporal universe endures, writes: "Human equilibrium requires two feet, the worlds gravitate by means of two forces, generation needs two sexes. Such is the meaning of the arcanum of Solomon, represented by the two pillars of the temple, Jakin and Bohas." (See Transcendental Magic.) The sun of Truth is shining into the garden of the world over which these two children, as personifications of eternal powers reside. The harmony of the world depends upon the coordination of two qualities symbolized throughout the ages as the mind and the heart. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the children give place to a youth and a maiden. Above them in a solar nimbus is the phallic emblem of generation--a line piercing a circle. Gemini is ruled by Mercury and the two children personify the serpents entwined around the caduceus.

The twentieth numbered major trump is called Le Jugement, the judgment, and portrays three figures rising apparently from their tombs, though but one coffin is visible. Above them in a blaze of glory is a winged figure (presumably the Angel Gabriel) blowing a trumpet. This Tarot represents the liberation of man's threefold spiritual nature from the sepulcher of his material constitution. Since but one-third of the spirit actually enters the physical body, the other two-thirds constituting the Hermetic anthropos or overman, only one of the three figures is actually rising from the tomb. Court de Gébelin believes that the coffin may have been an afterthought of the card makers and that the scene actually represents creation rather than resurrection, In philosophy these two words are practically synonymous. The blast of the trumpet represents the Creative Word, by the intoning of which man is liberated from his terrestrial limitations. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot it is evident that the three figures signify the parts of a single being, for three mummies are shown emerging from one mummy case.

The twenty-first numbered major trump is called Le Monde, the World, and portrays a female figure draped with a scarf which the wind blows into the form of the Hebrew letter Kaph. Her extended hands--each of which holds a wand--and her left leg, which crosses behind the right, cause the figure to assume the form of the alchemical symbol of sulphur. The central figure is surrounded by a wreath in the form of a vesica piscis which Levi likens to the Qabbalistic crown Kether. The Cherubim of Ezekiel's vision occupy the corners of the card. This Tarot is called the Microcosm and the Macrocosm because in it are summed up every agency contributing to the structure of creation. The figure in the form Of the emblem of sulphur represents the divine fire and the heart of the Great Mystery. The wreath is Nature, which surrounds the fiery center. The Cherubim represent the elements, worlds, forces, and planes issuing out of the divine fiery center of life. The wreath signifies the crown of the initiate which is given to those who master the four guardians and enter into the presence of unveiled Truth. In the pseudo-Egyptian Tarot the Cherubim surround a wreath composed of twelve trifoliate flowers--the decanates of the zodiac. A human figure kneels below this wreath, playing upon a harp of three strings, for the spirit must create harmony in the triple constitution of its inferior nature before it can gain for itself the solar crown of immortality.

The four suits of the minor trumps are considered as analogous to the four elements, the four corners of creation, and the four worlds of Qabbalism. The key to the lesser Tarots is presumably the Tetragrammaton, or the four-letter name of Jehovah, IHVH. The four suits of the minor trumps represent also the major divisions of society: cups are the priesthood, swords the military, coins the tradesmen, and rods the farming class. From the standpoint of what Court de Gébelin calls "political geography," cups represent the northern countries, swords the Orient, coins the Occident, and rods the southern countries. The ten pip cards of each suit represent the nations composing each of these grand divisions. The kings are their governments, the queens their religions, the knights their histories and national characteristics, and the pages their arts and sciences. Elaborate treatises have been written concerning the use of the Tarot cards in divination, but as this practice is contrary to the primary purpose of the Tarot no profit can result from its discussion.

Many interesting examples of early playing cards are found in the museums of Europe, and there are also noteworthy specimens in the cabinets of various private collectors. A few hand-painted decks exist which are extremely artistic. These depict various important personages contemporary with the artists. In some instances, the court cards are portraitures of the reigning monarch and his family. In England engraved cards became popular, and in the British Museum are also to be seen some extremely quaint stenciled cards. Heraldic devices were employed; and Chatto, in his Origin and History of Playing Cards, reproduces four heraldic cards in which the arms of Pope Clement IX adorn the king of clubs. There have been philosophical decks with emblems chosen from Greek and Roman mythology, also educational decks ornamented with maps or pictorial representations of famous historic places and incidents. Many rare examples of playing-cards have been found bound into the covers of early books. In Japan there are card games the successful playing of which requires familiarity with nearly all the literary masterpieces of that nation. In India there are circular decks depicting episodes from Oriental myths. There are also cards which in one sense of the word are not cards, for the designs are on wood, ivory, and even metal. There are comic cards caricaturing disliked persons and places, and there are cards commemorating various human achievements. During the American Civil War a patriotic deck was circulated in which stars, eagles, anchors, and American flags were substituted for the suits and the court cards were famous generals.

Modern playing cards are the minor trumps of the Tarot, from each suit of which the page, or valet, has been eliminated, leaving 13 cards. Even in its abridged form, however, the modern deck is of profound symbolic importance, for its arrangement is apparently in accord with the divisions of the year. The two colors, red and black, represent the two grand divisions of the year--that during which the sun is north of the equator and that during which it is south of the equator. The four suits represent the seasons, the ages of the ancient Greeks, and the Yugas of the Hindus. The twelve court cards are the signs of the zodiac arranged in triads of a Father, a Power, and a Mind according to the upper section of the Bembine Table. The ten pip cards of each suit represent the Sephirothic trees existing in each of the four worlds (the suits). The 13 cards of each suit are the 13 lunar months in each year, and the 52 cards of the deck are the 52 weeks in the year. Counting the number of pips and reckoning the jacks, queens, and kings as 11, 12, and 13 respectively, the sum for the 52 cards is 364. If the joker be considered as one point, the result is 365, or the number of days in the year. Milton Pottenger believed that the United States of America was laid out according to the conventional deck of playing cards, and that the government will ultimately consist of 52 States administered by a 53rd undenominated division, the District of Columbia.

The court cards contain a number of important Masonic symbols. Nine are full face and three are profile. Here is the broken "Wheel of the Law," signifying the nine months of the prenatal epoch and the three degrees of spiritual unfoldment necessary to produce the perfect man. The four armed kings are the Egyptian Ammonian Architects who gouged out the universe with knives. They are also the cardinal signs of the zodiac. The four queens, carrying eight-petaled flowers symbolic of the Christ, are the fixed signs of the zodiac. The four jacks, two of whom bear acacia sprigs--the jack of hearts in his hand, the jack of clubs in his hat-are the four common signs of the zodiac. It should be noted also that the court cards of the spade suit will not look upon the pip in the corner of the card but face away from it as though fearing this emblem of death. The Grand Master of the Order of the Cards is the king of clubs, who carries the orb as emblematic of his dignity.

In its symbolism chess is the most significant of all games. It has been called "the royal game"--the pastime of kings. Like the Tarot cards, the chessmen represent the elements of life and philosophy. The game was played in India and China long before its introduction into Europe. East Indian princes were wont to sit on the balconies of their palaces and play chess with living men standing upon a checkerboard pavement of black and white marble in the courtyard below. It is popularly believed that the Egyptian Pharaohs played chess, but an examination of their sculpture and illuminations has led to the conclusion that the Egyptian game was a form of draughts. In China, chessmen are often carved to represent warring dynasties, as the Manchu and the Ming. The chessboard consists of 64 squares alternately black and white and symbolizes the floor of the House of the Mysteries. Upon this field of existence or thought move a number of strangely carved figures, each according to fixed law. The white king is Ormuzd; the black king, Ahriman; and upon the plains of Cosmos the great war between Light and Darkness is fought through all the ages. Of the philosophical constitution of man, the kings represent the spirit; the queens the mind; the bishops the emotions; the knights the vitality; the castles, or rooks, the physical body. The pieces upon the kings' side are positive; those upon the queens' side, negative. The pawns are the sensory impulses and perceptive faculties--the eight parts of the soul. The white king and his suite symbolize the Self and its vehicles; the black king and his retinue, the not-self--the false Ego and its legion. The game of chess thus sets forth the eternal struggle of each part of man's compound nature against the shadow of itself. The nature of each of the chessmen is revealed by the way in which it moves; geometry is the key to their interpretation. For example: The castle (the body) moves on the square; the bishop (the emotions) moves on the slant; the king, being the spirit, cannot be captured, but loses the battle when so surrounded that it cannot escape.
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 12:52 am

The Tabernacle in the Wilderness

THERE is no doubt that much of the material recorded in the first five books of the Old Testament is derived from the initiatory rituals of the Egyptian Mysteries. The priests of Isis were deeply versed in occult lore, and the Israelites during their captivity in Egypt learned from them many things concerning the significance of Divinity and the manner of worshiping It. The authorship of the first five books of the Old Testament is generally attributed to Moses, but whether or not he was the actual writer of them is a matter of controversy. There is considerable evidence to substantiate the hypothesis that the Pentateuch was compiled at a much later date, from oral traditions. Concerning the authorship of these books, Thomas Inman makes a rather startling statement: "It is true that we have books which purport to be the books of Moses; so there are, or have been, books purporting to be written by Homer, Orpheus, Enoch, Mormon, and Junius; yet the existence of the writings, and the belief that they were written by those whose name they bear, are no real evidences of the men or the genuineness of the works called by their names. It is true also that Moses is spoken of occasionally in the time of the early Kings of Jerusalem; but it is clear that these passages are written by a late hand, and have been introduced into the places where they are found, with the definite intention of making it appear that the lawgiver was known to David and Solomon." (See Ancient Faiths Embodied in Ancient Names.)

While this noted scholar undoubtedly had much evidence to support his belief, it seems that this statement is somewhat too sweeping in character. It is apparently based upon the fact that Thomas Inman doubted the historical existence of Moses. This doubt was based upon the etymological resemblance of the word Moses to an ancient name for the sun. As the result of these deductions, Inman sought to prove that the Lawgiver of Israel was merely another form of the omnipresent solar myth. While Inman demonstrated that by transposing two of the ancient letters the word Moses (משה) became Shemmah (שמה), an appellation of the celestial globe, he seems to have overlooked the fact that in the ancient Mysteries the initiates were often given names synonymous with the sun, to symbolize the fact that the redemption and regeneration of the solar power had been achieved within their own natures. It is far more probable that the man whom we know as Moses was an accredited representative of the secret schools, laboring--as many other emissaries have labored--to instruct primitive races in the mysteries of their immortal souls.

The true name of the Grand Old Man of Israel who is known to history as Moses will probably never be ascertained. The word Moses, when understood in its esoteric Egyptian sense, means one who has been admitted into the Mystery Schools of Wisdom and ~as gone forth to teach the ignorant concerning the will of the gods and the mysteries of life, as these mysteries were explained within the temples of Isis, Osiris, and Serapis. There is much controversy concerning the nationality of Moses. Some assert that he was a Jew, adopted and educated by the ruling house of Egypt; others hold the opinion that he was a full-blooded Egyptian. A few even believe him to be identical with the immortal Hermes, for both these illustrious founders of religious systems received tablets from heaven supposedly written by the finger of God. The stories told concerning Moses, his discovery in the ark of bulrushes by Pharaoh's daughter, his adoption into the royal family of Egypt, and his later revolt against Egyptian autocracy coincide exactly with certain ceremonies through which the candidates of the Egyptian Mysteries passed in their ritualistic wanderings in search of truth and understanding. The analogy can also be traced in the movements of the heavenly bodies.

It is not strange that the erudite Moses, initiated in Egypt, should teach the Jews a philosophy containing the more important principles of Egyptian esotericism. The religions of Egypt at the time of the Israelitic captivity were far older than even the Egyptians themselves realized. Histories were difficult to compile in those days, and the Egyptians were satisfied to trace their race back to a mythological period when the gods themselves walked the earth and with their own power established the Double Empire of the Nile. The Egyptians did not dream that these divine progenitors were the Atlanteans, who, forced to abandon their seven islands because of volcanic cataclysms, had immigrated into Egypt--then an Atlantean colony--where they established a great philosophic and literary center of civilization which was later to influence profoundly the religions and science of unnumbered races and peoples. Today Egypt is forgotten, but things Egyptian will always be remembered and revered. Egypt is dead--yet it lives immortal in its philosophy, and architectonics.

As Odin founded his Mysteries in Scandinavia, and Quexalcoatl in Mexico, so Moses, laboring with the then nomadic people of Israel's twelve tribes, established in the midst of them his secret and symbolic school, which has came to be known as The Tabernacle Mysteries. The Tabernacle of: the Jews was merely a temple patterned after the temples of Egypt, and transportable to meet the needs of that roving disposition which the Israelites were famous. Every part of the Tabernacle and the enclosure which surrounded it was symbolic of some great natural or philosophic truth. To the ignorant it was but a place to which to bring offerings and in which to make sacrifice; to the wise it was a temple of learning, sacred to the Universal Spirit of Wisdom.

While the greatest, minds of the Jewish and Christian worlds have realized that the Bible is a book of allegories, few seem to have taken the trouble to investigate its symbols and parables. When Moses instituted his Mysteries, he is said to have given to a chosen few initiates certain oral teachings which could never be written but were to be preserved from one generation to the next by word-of-mouth transmission. Those instructions were in the form of philosophical keys, by means of which the allegories were made to reveal their hidden significance. These mystic keys to their sacred writings were called by the Jews the Qabbalah (Cabala, Kaballah).

The modern world seems to have forgotten the existence of those unwritten teachings which explained satisfactorily the apparent contradictions of the written Scriptures, nor does it remember that the pagans appointed their two-faced Janus as custodian of the key to the Temple of Wisdom. Janus has been metamorphosed into St. Peter, so often symbolized as holding in his hand the key to the gate of heaven. The gold and silver keys of "God's Vicar on Earth," the Pope, symbolizes this "secret doctrine" which, when properly understood, unlocks the treasure chest of the Christian and Jewish Qabbalah.

The temples of Egyptian mysticism (from which the Tabernacle was copied) were--according to their own priests--miniature representations of the universe. The solar system was always regarded as a great temple of initiation, which candidates entered through the gates of birth; after threading the tortuous passageways of earthly existence, they finally approached the veil of the Great Mystery--Death--through whose gate they vanished back into the invisible world. Socrates subtly reminded his disciples that Death was, in reality, the great initiation, for his last words were: "Crito, I owe a cock to Asclepius; will you remember to pay the debt?" (As the rooster was sacred to the gods and the sacrifice of this bird accompanied a candidate's introduction into the Mysteries, Socrates implied that he was about to take his great initiation.)

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THE ANCIENT OF DAYS.
From Montfaucon's Antiquities.
It is in this form that Jehovah is generally pictured by the Qabbalists. The drawing is intended to represent the Demiurgus of the Greeks and Gnostics, called by the Greeks "Zeus," the Immortal Mortal, and by the Hebrews "IHVH."


Life is the great mystery, and only those who pass successfully through its tests and trials, interpreting them aright and extracting the essence of experience therefrom, achieve true understanding. Thus, the temples were built in the form of the world and their rituals were based upon life and its multitudinous problems. Nor only was the Tabernacle itself patterned according to Egyptian mysticism; its utensils were also of ancient and accepted form. The Ark of the Covenant itself was an adaptation of the Egyptian Ark, even to the kneeling figures upon its lid. Bas-reliefs on the Temple of Philæ show Egyptian priests carrying their Ark--which closely resembled the Ark of the Jews--upon their shoulders by means of staves like those described in Exodus.

The following description of the Tabernacle and its priests is based upon the account of its construction and ceremonies recorded by Josephus in the Third Book of his Antiquities of the Jews. The Bible references are from a "Breeches" Bible (famous for its rendering of the seventh verse of the third chapter of Genesis), printed in London in 1599, and the quotations are reproduced in their original spelling and punctuation.

THE BUILDING OF THE TABERNACLE

Moses, speaking for Jehovah, the God of Israel, appointed two architects to superintend the building of the Tabernacle. They were Besaleel, the son of Uri, of the tribe of Judah, and Aholiab, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan. Their popularity was so great that they were also the unanimous choice of the people. When Jacob upon his deathbed blessed his sons (see Genesis xlix), he assigned to each a symbol. The symbol of Judah was a lion; that of Dan a serpent or a bird (possibly an eagle). The lion and the eagle are two of the four beasts of the Cherubim (the fixed signs of the zodiac); and the Rosicrucian alchemists maintained that the mysterious Stone of the Wise (the Soul) was compounded with the aid of the Blood of the Red Lion and the Gluten of the White Eagle. It seems probable that there is a hidden mystic relationship between fire (the Red Lion), water (the White Eagle), as they were used in occult chemistry, and the representatives of these two tribes whose symbols were identical with these alchemical elements.

As the Tabernacle was the dwelling place of God among men, likewise the soul body in man is the dwelling place of his divine nature, round which gathers a twelvefold material constitution in the same manner that the tribes of Israel camped about the enclosure sacred to Jehovah. The idea that the Tabernacle was really symbolic of an invisible spiritual truth outside the comprehension of the Israelites is substantiated by a statement made in the eighth chapter of Hebrews: "Who serve unto the paterne and shadowe of heavenly things, as Moses was warned by God, when he was about to finish the Tabernacle." Here we find the material physical place of worship called a "shadow" or symbol of a spiritual institution, invisible but omnipotent.

The specifications of the Tabernacle are described in the book of Exodus, twenty-fifth chapter: "Then the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speake unto the children of Israel that they receive an offering for me: of every man, whose heart giveth it freely, yee shall take the offering for me. And this is the offering which ye shall take of them, gold and silver, and brass, and blue silke, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linnen and goats haire. And rammes skinnes coloured red, and the skinnes of badgers, and the wood Shittim, oyle for the light, spices for anoynting oyle, and for the perfume of sweet favour, onix stones, and stories to be set in the Ephod, and in the breastplate. Also they shall make me a Sanctuary, that I may dwell among them. According to all that I shew thee, even so shall ye make the forme of the Tabernacle, and the fashion of all the instruments thereof."

The court of the Tabernacle was an enclosed area, fifty cubits wide and one hundred cubits long, circumscribed by a wall of linen curtains hung from brazen pillars five cubits apart. (The cubit is an ancient standard of measurement, its length being equal to the distance between the elbow and the extreme end of the index finger, approximately eighteen inches.) There were twenty of these pillars on each of the longer sides and ten on the shorter. Each pillar had a base of brass and a capital of silver. The Tabernacle was always laid out with the long sides facing north and south and the short sides facing east and west, with the entrance to the east, thus showing the influence of primitive sun worship.

The outer court served the principal purpose of isolating the tent of the Tabernacle proper, which stood in the midst of the enclosure. At the entrance to the courtyard, which was in the eastern face of the rectangle, stood the Altar of Burnt Offerings, made of brass plates over wood and ornamented with the horns of bulls and rams. Farther in, but on a line with this altar, stood the Laver of Purification, a great vessel containing water for priestly ablutions. The Laver was twofold in its construction, the upper part being a large bowl, probably covered, which served as a source of supply for a lower basin in which the priests bathed themselves before participating in the various ceremonials. It is supposed that this Laver was encrusted with the metal mirrors of the women of the twelve tribes of Israel.

The dimensions of the Tabernacle proper were as follows: "Its length, when it was set up, was thirty cubits, and its breadth was ten cubits. The one of its walls was on the south, and the other was exposed to the north, and on the back part of it remained the west. It was necessary that its height should be equal to its breadth (ten cubits)." (Josephus.)

It is the custom of bibliologists to divide the interior of the Tabernacle into two rooms: one room ten cubits wide, ten cubits high, and twenty cubits long, which was called the Holy Place and contained three special articles of furniture, namely, the Seven-Branched Candlestick, the Table of the Shewbread, and the Altar of Burnt Incense; the other room ten cubits wide, ten cubits high, and ten cubits long, which was called the Holy of Holies and contained but one article of furniture--the Ark of the Covenant. The two rooms were separated from each other by an ornamental veil upon which were embroidered many kinds of flowers, but no animal or human figures.

Josephus hints that there was a third compartment which was formed by subdividing the Holy Place, at least hypothetically, into two chambers. The Jewish historian is not very explicit in his description of this third room, and the majority of writers seem to have entirely overlooked and neglected this point, although Josephus emphatically states that Moses himself divided the inner tent into three sections. The veil separating the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies was hung across four pillars, which probably indicated in a subtle way the four elements, while at the entrance to the tent proper the Jews placed seven pillars, referring to the seven senses and the seven vowels of the Sacred Name. That later only five pillars are mentioned may be accounted for by the fact that at the present time man has only five developed senses and five active vowels. The early Jewish writer of The Baraitha treats of the curtains as follows:

"There were provided ten curtains of blue, of purple, and scarlet, and fine-twined linen. As is said, 'Moreover thou shall make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine-twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet.' * * * There were provided eleven curtains of goats' hair, and the length of every one of them was thirty cubits, * * *. Rabbi Judah said, 'There were two covers-the lower one of rams' skins dyed red, and the upper one of badgers' skins. '"

Calmet is of the opinion that the Hebrew word translated "badger" really means "dark purple" and therefore did not refer to any particular animal, but probably to a heavily woven waterproof fabric of dark and inconspicuous color. During the time of Israel's wanderings through the wilderness, it is supposed that a pillar of fire hovered over the Tabernacle at night, while a column of smoke traveled with it by day. This cloud was called by the Jews the Shechinah and was symbolic of the presence of the Lord. In one of the early Jewish books rejected at the time of the compiling of the Talmud the following description of the Shechinah appears:

"Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of the Lord filled the Tabernacle. And that was one of the clouds of glory, which served the Israelites in the wilderness forty years. One on the right hand, and one on the left, and one before them, and one behind them. And one over them, and a cloud dwelling in their midst (and the cloud, the Shechinah which was in the tent), and the pillar of cloud which moved before them, making low before them the high places, and making high before them the low places, and killing serpents and scorpions, and burning thorns and briars, and guiding them in the straight way." (From The Baraitha, the Book of the Tabernacle.)

THE FURNISHINGS OF THE TABERNACLE

There is no doubt that the Tabernacle, its furnishings and ceremonials, when considered esoterically, are analogous to the structure, organs, and functions of the human body. At the entrance to the outer court of the Tabernacle stood the Altar of Burnt Offerings, five cubits long and five cubits wide but only three cubits high. Its upper surface was a brazen grill upon which the sacrifice was placed, while beneath was a space for the fire. This altar signified that a candidate, when first entering the precincts of sanctuary, must offer upon the brazen altar not a poor unoffending bull or ram but its correspondence within his own nature. The bull, being symbolic of earthiness, represented his own gross constitution which must be burned up by the fire of his Divinity. (The sacrificing of beasts, and in some cases human beings, upon the altars of the pagans was the result of their ignorance concerning the fundamental principle underlying sacrifice. They did not realize that their offerings must come from within their own natures in order to be acceptable.)

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THE BREASTPLATE OF THE HIGH PRIEST.
From Calmet's Dictionary of the Holy Bible.
The order of the stones and the tribe over which each administered were, according to Calmet, as in the above diagram. These gems, according to the Rosicrucians, were symbolic of the twelve great qualities and virtues: Illumination, Love, Wisdom, Truth, Justice, Peace, Equilibrium, Humility, Faith, Strength, Joy, Victory.


Farther westward, in line with the Brazen Altar, was the Laver of Purification already described. It signified to the priest that he should cleanse not only his body but also his soul from all stains of impurity, for none who is not clean in both body and mind can enter into the presence of Divinity and live. Beyond the Laver of Purification was the entrance to the Tabernacle proper, facing the east, so that the first rays of the rising sun might enter and light the chamber. Between the encrusted pillars could be seen the Holy Place, a mysterious chamber, its walls hung with magnificent drapes embroidered with the faces of Cherubs.

Against the wall on the southern side of the Holy Place stood the great Candlestick, or lampstand, of cast gold, which was believed to weigh about a hundred pounds. From its central shaft branched out six arms, each ending in a cup-shaped depression in which stood an oil lamp. There were seven lamps, three on the arms at each side and one on the central stem. The Candlestick was ornamented with seventy-two almonds, knops, and flowers. Josephus says seventy, but wherever this round number is used by the Hebrews it really means seventy-two. Opposite the Candlestick, against the northern wall, was a table bearing twelve loaves of Shewbread in two stacks of six loaves each. (Calmet is of the opinion that the bread was not stacked up but spread out on the table in two rows, each containing six loaves.) On this table also stood two lighted incensories, which were placed upon the tops of the stacks of Shewbread so that the smoke of the incense might be an acceptable aroma to the Lord, bearing with it in its ascent the soul of the Shewbread.

In the center of the room, almost against the partition leading into the Holy of Holies, stood the Altar of Burnt Incense, made of wood overlaid with golden plates. Its width and length were each a cubit and its height was two cubits. This altar was symbolic of the human larynx, from which the words of man's mouth ascend as an acceptable offering unto the Lord, for the larynx occupies the position in the constitution of man between the Holy Place, which is the trunk of his body, and the Holy of Holies, which is the head with its contents.

Into the Holy of Holies none might pass save the High Priest, and he only at certain prescribed times, The room contained no furnishings save the Ark of the Covenant, which stood against the western wall, opposite the entrance. In Exodus the dimensions of the Ark are given as two and a half cubits for its length, one cubit and a half its breadth and one cubit and a half its height. It was made of shittim-wood, gold plated within and without, and contained the sacred tablets of the Law delivered to Moses upon Sinai. The lid of the Ark was in the form of a golden plate upon which knelt two mysterious creatures called Cherubim, facing each other, with wings arched overhead. It was upon this mercy seat between the wings of the celestials that the Lord of Israel descended when He desired to communicate with His High Priest.

The furnishings of the Tabernacle were made conveniently portable. Each altar and implement of any size was supplied with staves which could be put: through rings; by this means it could be picked up and carried by four or more bearers. The staves were never removed from the Ark of the Covenant until it was finally placed in the Holy of Holies of the Everlasting House, King Solomon's Temple.

There is no doubt that the Jews in early times realized, at least in part, that their Tabernacle was a symbolic edifice. Josephus realized this and while he has been severely criticized because he interpreted the Tabernacle symbolism according to Egyptian and Grecian paganism, his description of the secret meanings of its drapes and furnishings is well worthy of consideration. He says:

"When Moses distinguished the tabernacle into three parts, and allowed two of them to the priests, as a place accessible and common, he denoted the land and the sea, these being of general access to all; but he set apart the third division for God, because heaven is inaccessible to men. And when he ordered twelve loaves to be set on a table, he denoted the year, as distinguished into so many months. By branching out the candlestick into seventy parts, he secretly intimated the Decani, or seventy divisions of the planets; and as to the seven lamps upon the candlesticks, they referred to the course of the planets, of which that is the number. The veils too, which were composed of four things, they declared the four elements; for the plain linen was proper to signify the earth, because the flax grows out of the earth; the purple signified the sea, because that color is dyed by the blood of a sea shell-fish; the blue is fit to signify the air; and the scarlet will naturally be an indication of fire.

"Now the vestment of the high-priest being made of linen, signified the earth; the blue denoted the sky, being like lightning in its pomegranates, and in the noise of the bells resembling thunder. And for the Ephod, it showed that God had made the universe of four (elements); and as for the gold interwoven, * * * it related to the splendor by which all things are enlightened. He also appointed the breastplate to be placed in the middle of the Ephod, to resemble the earth, for that has the very middle place of the world. And the girdle which encompassed the high-priest round signified the ocean, for that goes round about and includes the universe. Each of the sardonyxes declares to us the sun and the moon, those, I mean, that were in the nature of buttons on the high-priest's shoulders. And for the twelve stones, whether we understand by them the months, or whether we understand the like number of the signs of that circle which the Greeks call the Zodiac, we shall not be mistaken in their meaning. And for the mitre, which was of a blue colour, it seems to me to mean heaven; for how otherwise could the name of God be inscribed upon it? That it was also illustrated with a crown, and that of gold also, is because of that splendour with which God is pleased." It is also symbolically significant that the Tabernacle was built in seven months and dedicated to God at the time of the new moon.

The metals used in the building of the Tabernacle were all emblematic. Gold represents spirituality, and the golden plates laid over the shittim-wood were emblems of the spiritual nature which glorifies the human nature symbolized by the wood. Mystics have taught that man's physical body is surrounded by a series of invisible bodies of diverse colors and great splendor. In the majority of people the spiritual nature is concealed and imprisoned in the material nature, but in a few this internal constitution has been objectified and the spiritual nature is outside, so that it surrounds man's personality with a great radiance.

Silver, used as the capitals for the pillars, has its reference to the moon, which was sacred to the Jews and the Egyptians alike. The priests held secret ritualistic ceremonies at the time of the new and the full moon, both of which periods were sacred to Jehovah. Silver, so the ancients taught, was gold with its sun-ray turned inward instead of objectified. While gold symbolized the spiritual soul, silver represented the purified and regenerated human nature of man.

The brass used in the outer altars was a composite substance consisting of an alloy of precious and base metals. Thus, it represented the constitution of the average individual, who is a combination of both the higher and the lower elements.

The three divisions of the Tabernacle should have a special interest to Freemasons, for they represent the three degrees of the Blue Lodge, while the three orders of priests who served the Tabernacle are preserved to modern Masonry as the Entered Apprentice, the Fellow Craftsman, and the Master Mason. The Hawaiian Islanders built a Tabernacle not unlike that of the Jews, except that their rooms were one above another and not one behind another, as in the case of the Tabernacle of the Israelites. The three rooms are also the three important chambers of the Great Pyramid of Gizeh.

THE ROBES OF GLORY

As explained in the quotation from Josephus, the robes and adornments of the Jewish priests had a secret significance, and even to this day there is a religious cipher language concealed in the colors, forms, and uses of sacred garments, not only among the Christian and Jewish priests but also among pagan religions. The vestments of the Tabernacle priests were called Cahanææ; those of the High Priest were termed Cahanææ Rabbæ. Over the Machanese, an undergarment resembling short trousers, they wore the Chethone, a finely woven linen robe, which reached to the ground and had long sleeves tied to the arms of the wearer. A brightly embroidered sash, twisted several times around the waist (a little higher than is customary), with one end pendent in front, and a closely fitting linen cap, designated Masnaemphthes, completed the costume of the ordinary priest.

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THE GARMENTS OF GLORY.
From Mosaize Historie der Hebreeuwse Kerke.
Th. robe of the High Priest of Israel were often called "The Garments of Glory", for they resembled the regenerated and spiritualized nature of man, symbolized by a vestment which all must weave from the threads of character and virtue before they can become High Priests after the Order of Melchizedek.


The vestments of the High Priest were the same as those of the lesser degrees, except that certain garments and adornments were added. Over the specially woven white linen robe the High Priest wore a seamless and sleeveless habit, sky-blue in color and reaching nearly to his feet. This was called the Meeir and was ornamented with a fringe of alternated golden bells and pomegranates. In Ecclesiasticus (one of the books rejected from the modern Bible), these bells and their purpose are described in the following words: "And he compassed him with pomegranates, and with many golden bells round about, that as he went, there might be a sound and a noise that might be heard in the temple, for a memorial to the children of his people." The Meeir was also bound in with a variegated girdle finely embroidered and with gold wire inserted through the embroidery.

The Ephod, a short vestment described by Josephus as resembling a coat or jacket, was worn over the upper part of the Meeir. The threads of which the Ephod was woven were of many colors, probably red, blue, purple, and white, like the curtains and coverings of the Tabernacle. Fine gold wires were also woven into the fabric. The Ephod was fastened at each shoulder with a large onyx in the form of a button, and the names of the twelve sons of Jacob were engraven upon these two stones, six on each. These onyx buttons were supposed to have oracular powers, and when the High Priest asked certain questions, they emitted a celestial radiance. When the onyx on the right shoulder was illuminated, it signified that Jehovah answered the question of the High Priest: in the affirmative, and when the one on the left gleamed, it indicated a negative answer to the query.

In the middle of the front surface of the Ephod was a space to accommodate the Essen, or Breastplate of Righteousness and Prophecy, which, as its name signifies, was also an oracle of great power. This pectoral was roughly square in shape and consisted of a frame of embroidery into which were set twelve stones, each held in a socket of gold. Because of the great weight of its stones, each of which was of considerable size and immense value, the breastplate was held in position by special golden chains and ribbons. The twelve stones of the breastplate, like the onyx stones at the shoulders of the Ephod, had the mysterious power of lighting up with Divine glory and so serving as oracles. Concerning the strange power of these flashing symbols of Israel's twelve tribes, Josephus writes:

"Yet will I mention what is still more wonderful than this: For God declared beforehand, by those twelve stones which the High Priest bare upon his breast and which were inserted into his breastplate, when they should be victorious in battle; for so great a splendor shone forth from them before the army began to march, that all the people were sensible of God's being present for their assistance. Whence it came to pass that those Greeks, who had a veneration for our laws, because they could not possibly contradict this, called the breastplate, 'the Oracle'." The writer then adds that the stones ceased to light up and gleam some two hundred years before he wrote his history, because the Jews had broken the laws of Jehovah and the God of Israel was no longer pleased with His chosen people.

The Jews learned astronomy from the Egyptians, and it is not unlikely that the twelve jewels of the breastplate were symbolic of the twelve constellations of the zodiac. These twelve celestial hierarchies were looked upon as jewels adorning the breastplate of the Universal Man, the Macroprosophus, who is referred to in the Zohar as The Ancient of Days. The number twelve frequently occurs among ancient peoples, who in nearly every case had a pantheon consisting of twelve demigods and goddesses presided over by The Invincible One, who was Himself subject to the Incomprehensible All-Father. This use of the number twelve is especially noted in the Jewish and Christian writings. The twelve prophets, the twelve patriarchs, the twelve tribes, and the twelve Apostles--each group has a certain occult significance, for each refers to the Divine Duodecimo, or Twelvefold Deity, whose emanations are manifested in the tangible created Universe through twelve individualized channels. The secret doctrine also caught the priests that the jewels represented centers of life within their own constitutions, which when unfolded according to the esoteric instructions of the Temple, were capable of absorbing into themselves and radiating forth again the Divine light of the Deity. (The East Indian lotus blossoms have a similar meaning.) The Rabbis have taught that each twisted linen thread used in weaving the Tabernacle curtains and ornamentations consisted of twenty-four separate strands, reminding the discerning that the experience, gained during the twenty-four hours of the day (symbolized in Masonry by the twenty-four-inch rule) becomes the threads from which are woven the Garments of Glory.

THE URIM AND THUMMIM

In the reverse side of the Essen, or breastplate, was a pocket containing mysterious objects--the Urim and Thummim. Aside from the fact that they were used in divination, little is now known about these objects. Some writers contend that they were small stones (resembling the fetishes still revered by certain aboriginal peoples) which the Israelites had brought with them out of Egypt because of their belief that they possessed divine power. Others believe that the Urim and Thummim were in the form of dice, used for deciding events by being cast upon the ground. A few have maintained that they were merely sacred names, written on plates of gold and carried as talismans. "According to some, the Urim and the Thummim signify 'lights and perfections,' or 'light and truth' which last present a striking analogy to the. two figures of Re (Ra) and Themi in the breastplate worn by the Egyptians." (Gardner's The Faiths of the World.)

Not the least remarkable of the vestments of the High Priest was his bonnet, or headdress. Over the plain white cap of the ordinary priest this dignitary wore an outer cloth of blue and a crown of gold, the crown consisting of three bands, one above the other like the triple miter of the Persian Magi. This crown symbolized that the High Priest was ruler not only over the three worlds which the ancients had differentiated (heaven, earth, and hell), but also over the threefold divisions of man and the universe--the spiritual, intellectual, and material worlds. These divisions were also symbolized by the three apartments of the Tabernacle itself.

At the peak of the headdress was a tiny cup of gold, made in the form of a flower. This signified that the nature of the priest was receptive and that he had a vessel in his own soul which, cuplike, was capable of catching the eternal waters of life pouring upon him from the heavens above. This flower over the crown of his head is similar in its esoteric meaning to the rose growing out of a skull, so famous in Templar symbology. The ancients believed that the spiritual nature escaping from the body passed upward through the crown of the head; therefore, the flowerlike calyx, or cup, symbolized also the spiritual consciousness. On the front of the golden crown were inscribed in Hebrew, Holiness unto the Lord.

Though robes and ornaments augmented the respect and veneration of the Israelites for their High Priest, such trappings meant nothing to Jehovah. Therefore, before entering the Holy of Holies, the High Priest removed his earthly finery and entered into the presence of the Lord God of Israel unclothed. There he could be robed only in his own virtues, and his spirituality must adorn him as a garment.

There is a legend to the effect that any who chanced to enter the Holy of Holies unclean were destroyed by a bolt of Divine fire from the Mercy Seat. If the High Priest had but one selfish thought, he would be struck dead. As no man knows when an unworthy thought may flash through his mind, precautions had to be taken in case the High Priest should be struck dead while in the presence of Jehovah. The other priests could not enter the sanctuary therefore, when their leader was about to go in and receive the commands of the Lord, they tied a chain around one of his feet so that if he were struck down while behind the veil they could drag the body out.

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THE HEADDRESS OF THE PRIESTS.
From Mosaize Historie der Hebreeuwse Kerke.
Over the plain white cap of the ordinary priests the High Priest wore an overcloth of blue and a band of gold. On the front of the golden band were inscribed the Hebrew words "Holiness unto the Lord." This illustration shows the arrangement of the bonnet both with and without the golden crown.


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THE ARK WITH ITS CHERUBIM.
From Calmet's Dictionary of the Holy Bible.
Josephus tells its that the Cherubim were flying creatures but different in appearance, from anything to be seen on earth; therefore impossible to describe. Moses is supposed to have seen these beings kneeling at the footstool of God when he was picked up and brought into the Presence of Jehovah. It is probable that they resembled, at least in general appearance, the famous Cherubim of Ezekiel.
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 12:57 am

The Fraternity of the Rose Cross

WHO were the Rosicrucians? Were they an organization of profound thinkers rebelling against the inquisitional religious and philosophical limitations of their time or were they isolated transcendentalists united only by the similarity of their viewpoints and deductions? Where was the "House of the Holy Spirit, " in which, according to their manifestoes, they met once a year to plan the future activities of their Order? Who was the mysterious person referred to as "Our Illustrious Father and Brother C.R.C."? Did those three letters actually stand for the words "Christian Rosie Cross"? Was Christian Rosencreutz, the supposed author of the Chymical Nuptials, the same person who with three others founded "The Society of the Rose Cross"?

What relationship existed between Rosicrucianism and mediæval Freemasonry? Why were the destinies of these two organizations so closely interwoven? Is the "Brotherhood of the Rose Cross" the much-sought-after link connecting the Freemasonry of the Middle Ages with the symbolism and mysticism of antiquity, and are its secrets being perpetuated by modern Masonry? Did the original Rosicrucian Order disintegrate in the latter part of the eighteenth century, or does the Society still exist as an organization, maintaining the same secrecy for which it was originally famous? What was the true purpose for which the "Brotherhood of the Rose Cross" was formed? Were the Rosicrucians a religious and philosophic brotherhood, as they claimed to be, or were their avowed tenets a blind to conceal the true object of the Fraternity, which possibly was the political control of Europe? These are some of the problems involved in the study of Rosicrucianism.

There are four distinct theories regarding the Rosicrucian enigma. Each is the result of a careful consideration of the evidence by scholars who have spent their lives ransacking the archives of Hermetic lore. The conclusions reached demonstrate clearly the inadequacy of the records available concerning the genesis and early activities of the "Brethren of the Rose Cross."

THE FIRST POSTULATE

It is assumed that the Rosicrucian Order existed historically in accordance with the description of its foundation and subsequent activities published in its manifesto, the Fama Fraternitatis, which is believed to have been written in the year 1610, but apparently did not appear in print until 1614, although an earlier edition is suspected by some authorities. Intelligent consideration of the origin of Rosicrucianism requires a familiarity with the contents of the first and most important of its documents. The Fama Fraternitatis begins with a reminder to all the world of God's goodness and mercy, and it warns the intelligentsia that their egotism and covetousness cause them to follow after false prophets and to ignore the true knowledge which God in His goodness has revealed to them. Hence, a reformation is necessary, and God has raised up philosophers and sages for this purpose.

In order to assist in bringing about the reformation, a mysterious person called "The Highly Illuminated Father C.R.C.," a German by birth, descended of a noble family, but himself a poor man, instituted the "Secret Society of the Rose Cross." C.R.C. was placed in a cloister when only five years of age, but later becoming dissatisfied with its educational system, he associated himself with a brother of Holy Orders who was setting forth on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. They started out together, but the brother died at Cyprus and C.R.C! continued alone to Damascus. Poor health prevented him from reaching Jerusalem, so he remained at Damascus, studying with the philosophers who dwelt there.

While pursuing his studies, he heard of a group of mystics and Qabbalists abiding in the mystic Arabian city of Damcar. Giving up his desire to visit Jerusalem, he arranged with the Arabians for his transportation to Damcar. C.R.C. was but sixteen years of age when he arrived at Damcar. He was received as one who had been long expected, a comrade and a friend in philosophy, and was instructed in the secrets of the Arabian adepts. While there, C.R.C. learned the Arabic tongue and translated the sacred book M into Latin; and upon returning to Europe he brought this important volume with him.

After studying three years in Damcar, C.R.C. departed for the city of Fez, where the Arabian magicians declared further information would be given him. At Fez he was instructed how to communicate with the Elementary inhabitants [probably the Nature spirits], and these disclosed to him many other great secrets of Nature. While the philosophers in Fez were not so great as those in Damcar, the previous experiences of C.R.C. enabled him to distinguish the true from the false and thus add greatly to his store of knowledge.

After two years in Fez, C.R.C. sailed for Spain, carrying with him many treasures, among them rare plants and animals accumulated during his wanderings. He fondly hoped that the learned men of Europe would receive with gratitude the rare intellectual and material treasures which he had brought for their consideration. Instead he encountered only ridicule, for the so-called wise were afraid to admit their previous ignorance lest their prestige be impaired. At this point in the narrative is an interpolation stating that Paracelsus, while not a member of the "Fraternity of the Rose Cross," had read the book M and from a consideration of its contents had secured information which made him the foremost physician of mediæval Europe.

Tired, but not discouraged, as the result of the fruitlessness of his efforts, C.R.C. returned to Germany, where he built a house in which he could quietly carry on his study and research. He also manufactured a number of rare scientific instruments for research purposes. While he could have made himself famous had he cared to commercialize his knowledge, he preferred the companionship of God to the esteem of men.
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THE GOLDEN AND ROSY CROSS.
From Geheime Figuren der Rosenkreuzer.
It is said of this cross that it is made of spiritual gold and that each Brother wears it upon his breast. It bears the alchemical symbols of salt, sulphur, and mercury; also a star of the planets; and around it are the four words FAITH, HOPE, LOVE, and PATIENCE. The double-headed eagle, or Phœnix, subtly foreshadows the ultimate androgynous state of the human creature. Rosicrucian alchemy was not concerned with metals alone. Man's own body was the alchemical laboratory, and none could reach Rosicrucian adeptship until he had performed the supreme experiment of transmutation by changing the base metals of ignorance into the pure gold of wisdom and understanding.


After five years of retirement he decided to renew his struggle for a reformation of the arts and sciences of his day, this time with the aid of a few trusted friends. He sent to the cloister where his early training had been received and called to himself three brethren, whom he bound by an oath to preserve inviolate the secrets he should impart and to write down for the sake of posterity the information he should dictate. These four founded the "Fraternity of the Rose Cross." They prepared its secret cipher language and, according to the Fama, a great dictionary in which all forms of wisdom were classified to the glorification of God. They also began the work of transcribing the book M, but found the task too difficult because of the demands of the great numbers of sick who came to them for healing.

Having completed a newer and larger building, which they called the "House of the Holy Spirit," they decided to include four new members in the Fraternity, thus increasing the number to eight, seven of whom were German. All were unmarried. Working industriously together, they speedily completed the arduous labor of preparing the documents, instructions, and arcana of the Order. They also put the house called "Sancti Spiritus" in order.

They then decided to separate and visit the other countries of the earth, not only that their wisdom might be given to others who deserved it but also that they might check and correct any mistakes existing in their own system. Before separating, the Brethren prepared six rules, or by-laws, and each bound himself to obey them. The first rule was that they should take to themselves no other dignity or credit than that they were willing to heal the sick without charge. The second was that from that time on forever they should wear no special robe or garment, but should dress according to the custom of the country wherein they dwelt. The third stated that every year upon a certain day they should meet in the "House of the Holy Spirit," or, if unable to do so, should be represented by an epistle. The fourth decreed that each member should search for a worthy person to succeed him at his own demise. The fifth stated that the letters "R.C." should be their seal, mark, and character from that time onward. The sixth specified that the Fraternity should remain unknown to the world for a period of one hundred years.

After they had sworn to this code five of the Brothers departed to distant lands, and a year later two of the others also went their way, leaving Father C.R. C. alone in the "House of the Holy Spirit." Year after year they met with great joy, for they had quietly and sincerely promulgated their doctrines among the wise of the earth.

When the first of the Order died in England, it was decided that the burial places of the members should be secret. Soon afterward Father C.R.C. called the remaining six together, and it is supposed that then he prepared his own symbolic tomb. The Fama records that none of the Brothers alive at the time of its writing knew when Father C.R.C. died or where he was buried. His body was accidentally discovered 120 years after his death when one of the Brothers, who possessed considerable architectural skill, decided to make some alterations in the "House of the Holy Spirit." [It is only suspected that the tomb was in this building.]

While making his alterations, the Brother discovered a memorial tablet upon which were inscribed the names of the early members of the Order. This he decided to transfer to a more imposing chapel, for at that time no one knew in what country Father C.R.C. had died, this information having been concealed by the original members. In attempting to remove the memorial tablet, which was held in place by a large nail, some stones and plastering were broken from the wall, disclosing a door concealed in the masonry. The members of the Order immediately cleared away the rest of the débris and uncovered the entrance to a vault. Upon the door in large letters were the words: POST CXX ANNOS PATEBO. This, according to the mystic interpretation of the Brethren, meant, "In 120 years I shall come forth."

The following morning the door was opened and the members entered a vault with seven sides and seven corners, each side five feet broad and eight feet high. Although the sun never penetrated this tomb, it was brilliantly illuminated by a mysterious light in the ceiling. In the center was a circular altar, upon which were brass plates engraved with strange characters. In each of the seven sides was a small door which, upon being opened, revealed a number of boxes filled with books, secret instructions, and the supposedly lost arcanum of the Fraternity.

Upon moving the altar to one side a brass cover was disclosed. Lifting this revealed a body, presumedly that of C.R.C., which, although it had lain there 120 years, was as well preserved as though it had just been interred. It was ornamented and attired in the robes of the Order, and in one hand was clasped a mysterious parchment which, next to the Bible, was the most valued possession of the Society. After thoroughly investigating the contents of the secret chamber, the brass plate and altar were put back in place, the door of the vault was again sealed, and the Brothers went their respective ways, their spirits raised and their faith increased by the miraculous spectacle which they had beheld.

The document ends by saying in effect, "In accordance with the will of Father C.R.C., the Fama has been prepared and sent forth to the wise and learned of all Europe in five languages, that all may know and understand the secrets of the august Fraternity. All of sincere soul who labor for the glory of God are invited to communicate with the Brethren and are promised that their appeal shall be heard, regardless of where they are or how the messages are sent. At the same time, those of selfish and ulterior motives are warned that only sorrow and misery will attend any who attempt to discover the Fraternity without a clean heart and a pure mind."

Such, in brief, is the story of the Fama Fraternitatis. Those who accept it literally regard Father C.R.C. as the actual founder of the Brotherhood, which he is believed to have organized about 1400. The fact that historical corroboration of the important points of the Fama has never been discovered is held against this theory. There is no proof that Father C.R.C. ever approached the learned men of Spain. The mysterious city of Damcar cannot be found, and there is no record that anywhere in Germany there existed a place where great numbers of the halt and sick came and were mysteriously healed. A. E. Waite's The Secret Tradition in Freemasonry contains a picture of Father C.R.C. showing him with a long beard upon his breast, sitting before a table upon which burns a candle. One hand is supporting his head and the other is resting the tip of its index finger on the temple of a human skull. The picture, however (see plate at head of chapter), proves nothing. Father C.R.C. was never seen by other than members of his own Order, and they did not preserve a description of him. That his name was Christian Rosencreutz is most improbable, as the two were not even associated until the writing of the Chymical Nuptials.

THE SECOND POSTULATE

Those Masonic brethren who have investigated the subject accept the historical existence of the "Brotherhood of the Rose Cross" but are divided concerning the origin of the Order. One group holds the society originated in mediæval Europe as an outgrowth of alchemical speculation. Robert Macoy, 33°, believes that Johann Valentin Andreæ, a German theologian, was the true founder, and he also believes it possible that this divine merely reformed and amplified an existing society which had been founded by Sir Henry Cornelius Agrippa. Some believe that Rosicrucianism represented the first European invasion of Buddhist and Brahmin culture. Still others hold the opinion that the "Society of the Rose Cross" was founded in Egypt during n the philosophic supremacy of that empire, and that it also perpetuated the Mysteries of ancient Persia and Chaldea.

In his Anacalypsis, Godfrey Higgins writes: "The Rosicrucians of Germany are quite ignorant of their origin; but, by tradition, they suppose themselves descendants of the ancient Egyptians, Chaldeans, Magi, and Gymnosophists." (The last was a name given by the followers of Alexander the Great to a caste of naked Wise Men whom they found meditating along the river banks in India.) The consensus among these factions is that the story of Father C.R.C., like the Masonic legend of Hiram Abiff, is an allegory and should not be considered literally. A similar problem has confronted students of the Bible, who have found not only difficult, but in the majority of cases impossible, their efforts to substantiate the historical interpretation of the Scriptures.

Admitting the existence of the Rosicrucians as a secret society with both philosophic and political ends, it is remarkable that an organization with members in all parts of Europe could maintain absolute secrecy throughout the centuries. Nevertheless, the "Brothers of the Rose Cross" were apparently able to accomplish this. A great number of scholars and philosophers, among them Sir Francis Bacon and Wolfgang von Goethe, have been suspected of affiliation with the Order, but their connection has not been established to the satisfaction of prosaic historians. Pseudo-Rosicrucians abounded, but the true members of the "Ancient and Secret Order of The Unknown Philosophers" have successfully lived up to their name; to this day they remain unknown.

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THE CRUCIFIED ROSE.
The original symbol of the Rosicrucian Fraternity was a hieroglyphic rose crucified upon a cross. The cross was often raised upon a three-stepped Calvary. Occasionally the symbol of a cross rising from a rose was used in connection with their activities. The Rosicrucian rose was drawn upon the Round Table of King Arthur, and is the central motif for the links forming the chain from which the "Great George" is suspended among the jewels of The Order of the Garter. Hargrave Jennings suspects this Order of having some connection with the Rosicrucians.


During the Middle Ages a number of tracts appeared, purporting to be from the pens of Rosicrucians. Many of them, however, were spurious, being issued for their self-aggrandizement by unscrupulous persons who used the revered and magic name Rosicrucian in the hope of gaining religious or political power. This has greatly complicated the work of investigating the Society. One group of pseudo-Rosicrucians went so far as to supply its members with a black cord by which they were to know each other, and warned them that if they broke their vow of secrecy the cord would be used to strangle them. Few of the principles of Rosicrucianism have been preserved in literature, for the original Fraternity published only fragmentary accounts of its principles and activities.

In his Secret Symbols of the Rosicrucians, Dr. Franz Hartmann describes the Fraternity as "A secret society of men possessing superhuman--if not supernatural--powers; they were said to be able to prophesy future events, to penetrate into the deepest mysteries of Nature, to transform Iron, Copper, Lead, or Mercury into Gold, to prepare an Elixir of Life, or Universal Panacea, by the use of which they could preserve their youth and manhood; and moreover it was believed that they could command the Elemental Spirits of Nature, and knew the secret of the Philosopher's Stone, a substance which rendered him who possessed it all-powerful, immortal, and supremely wise."

The same author further defines a Rosicrucian as "A person who by the process of spiritual awakening has attained a practical knowledge of the secret significance of the Rose and the Cross. * * * To call a person a Rosicrucian does not make him one, nor does the act of calling a person a Christian make him a Christ. The real Rosicrucian or Mason cannot be made; he must grow to be one by the expansion and unfoldment of the divine power within his own heart. The inattention to this truth is the cause that many churches and secret societies are far from being that which their names express."

The symbolic principles of Rosicrucianism are so profound that even today they are little appreciated. Their charts and diagrams are concerned with weighty cosmic principles which they treat with a philosophic understanding decidedly refreshing when compared with the orthodox narrowness prevalent in their day. According to the available records, the Rosicrucians were bound together by mutual aspirations rather than by the laws of a fraternity. The "Brothers of the Rose Cross" are believed to have lived unobtrusively, laboring industriously in trades and professions, disclosing their secret affiliation to no one--in many cases not even to their own families. After the death of C.R.C., most of the Brethren apparently had no central meeting place. Whatever initiatory ritual the Order possessed was so closely guarded that it has never been revealed. Doubtless it was couched in chemical terminology.

Efforts to join the Order were apparently futile, for the Rosicrucians always chose their disciples. Having agreed on one who they believed would do honor to their illustrious fraternity, they communicated with him in one of many mysterious ways. He might receive a letter, either anonymous or with a peculiar seal, usually bearing the letters "C.R.C. "or "R.C. "upon it. He would be instructed to go to a certain place at an appointed time. What was disclosed to him he never revealed, although in many cases his later writings showed that a new influence had come into his life, deepening his understanding and broadening his intellect. A few have written allegorically concerning what they beheld when in the august presence of the "Brethren of the Rose Cross."

Alchemists were sometimes visited in their laboratories by mysterious strangers, who delivered learned discourses concerning the secret processes of the Hermetic arts and, after disclosing certain processes, departed, leaving no trace. Others declared that the "Brothers of the Rose Cross" communicated with them through dreams and visions, revealing the secrets of Hermetic wisdom to them while they were asleep. Having been instructed, the candidate was bound to secrecy not only concerning the chemical formulæ which had been disclosed to him but also concerning the method by which he had secured them. While these nameless adepts were suspected of being ''Brothers of the Rose Cross," it could never be proved who they were, and those visited could only conjecture.

Many suspect the Rosicrucian rose to be a conventionalization of the Egyptian and Hindu lotus blossom, with the same symbolic meaning as this more ancient symbol. The Divine Comedy stamps Dante Alighieri as being familiar with the theory of Rosicrucianism. Concerning this point, Albert Pike in his Morals and Dogma makes this significant statement: "His Hell is but a negative Purgatory. His heaven is composed of a series of Kabalistic circles, divided by a cross, like the Pantacle of Ezekiel. In the center of this cross blooms a rose, and we see the symbol of the Adepts of the Rose-Croix for the first time publicly expounded and almost categorically explained."

Doubt has always existed as to whether the name Rosicrucian came from the symbol of the rose and cross, or whether this was merely a blind to deceive the uninformed and further conceal the true meaning of the Order. Godfrey Higgins believes that the word Rosicrucian is not derived from the flower but from the word Ros, which means dew. It is also interesting to note that the word Ras means wisdom, while Rus is translated concealment. Doubtless all of these meanings have contributed to Rosicrucian symbolism.

A. E. Waite holds with Godfrey Higgins that the process of forming the Philosopher's Stone with the aid of dew is the secret concealed within the name Rosicrucian. It is possible that the dew referred to is a mysterious substance within the human brain, closely resembling the description given by alchemists of the dew which, falling from heaven, redeemed the earth. The cross is symbolic of the human body, and the two symbols together--the rose on the cross--signify that the soul of man is crucified upon the body, where it is held by three nails.

It is probable that Rosicrucian symbolism is a perpetuation of the secret tenets of the Egyptian Hermes, and that the Society of Unknown Philosophers is the true link connecting modern Masonry, with its mass of symbols, to ancient Egyptian Hermeticism, the source of that symbolism. In his Doctrine and Literature of the Kabalah, A. E. Waite makes this important observation: "There are certain indications which point to a possible connection between Masonry and Rosicrucianism, and this, if admitted, would constitute the first link in its connection with the past. The evidence is, however, inconclusive, or at least unextricated. Freemasonry per se, in spite of the affinity with mysticism which I have just mentioned, has never exhibited any mystic character, nor has it a clear notion how it came by its symbols."

Many of those connected with the development of Freemasonry were suspected of being Rosicrucians; some, as in the case of Robert Fludd, even wrote defenses of this organization. Frank C. Higgins, a modern Masonic symbolist, writes: "Doctor Ashmole, a member of this fraternity [Rosicrucian], is revered by Masons as one of the founders of the first Grand Lodge in London." (See Ancient Freemasonry.) Elias Ashmole is but one of many intellectual links connecting Rosicrucianism with the genesis of Freemasonry. The Encyclopædia Britannica notes that Elias Ashmole was initiated into the Freemasonic Order in 1646, and further states that he was "the first gentleman, or amateur, to be 'accepted'."

On this same subject, Papus, in his Tarot of the Bohemians, has written: "We must not forger that the Rosicrucians were the Initiators of Leibnitz, and the founders of actual Freemasonry through Ashmole." If the founders of Freemasonry were initiated into the Great Arcanum of Egypt--and the symbolism of modern Masonry would indicate that such was the case--then it is reasonable to suppose that they secured their information from a society whose existence they admitted and which was duly qualified to teach them these symbols and allegories.

One theory concerning the two Orders is to the effect that Freemasonry was an outgrowth of Rosicrucianism; in other words, that the "Unknown Philosophers" became known through an organization which they created to serve them in the material world. The story goes on to relate that the Rosicrucian adepts became dissatisfied with their progeny and silently withdrew from the Masonic hierarchy, leaving behind their symbolism and allegories, but carrying away the keys by which the locked symbols could be made to give tip their secret meanings. Speculators have gone so far as to state that, in their opinion, modern Freemasonry has completely absorbed Rosicrucianism and succeeded it as the world's greatest secret society. Other minds of equal learning declare that the Rosicrucian Brotherhood still exists, preserving its individuality as the result of having withdrawn from the Masonic Order.

According to a widely accepted tradition, the headquarters of the Rosicrucian Order is near Carlsbad, in Austria (see Doctor Franz Hartmann). Another version has it that a mysterious school, resembling in general principles the Rosicrucian Fraternity, which calls itself "The Bohemian Brothers," still maintains its individuality in the Schwarzwald (Black Forest) of Germany. One thing is certain: with the rise of Freemasonry, the Rosicrucian Order in Europe practically disappeared, and notwithstanding existing statements to the contrary, it is certain that the 18th degree (commonly known as the Rose-Croix) perpetuates many of the symbols of the Rosicrucian Fire Alchemists.

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THE ROSICRUCIAN ROSE.
From Geheime Figuren der Rosenkreuzer.
The rose is a yonic symbol associated with generation, fecundity, and purity. The fact that flowers blossom by unfolding has caused them to be chosen as symbolic of spiritual unfoldment. The red color of the rose refers to the blood of Christ, and the golden heart concealed within the midst of the flower corresponds to the spiritual gold concealed within the human nature. The number of its petals being ten is also a subtle reminder of the perfect Pythagorean number. The rose symbolizes the heart, and the heart has always been accepted by Christians as emblematic of the virtues of love and compassion, as well as of the nature of Christ--the personification of these virtues. The rose as a religious emblem is of great antiquity. It was accepted by the Greeks as the symbol of the sunrise, or of the coming of dawn. In his Metamorphosis, or Golden Ass, Apuleius, turned into a donkey because of his foolishness, regained his human shape by eating a sacred rose given to him by the Egyptian priests.
The presence of a hieroglyphic rose upon the escutcheon of Martin Luther has been the basis of much speculation as to whether any connection existed between his Reformation and the secret activities of the Rose Cross.


In an anonymous unpublished manuscript of the eighteenth century bearing the earmarks of Rosicrucian Qabbalism appears this statement: "Yet will I now give the over-wise world a paradox to be solved, namely, that some illuminated men have undertaken to found Schools of Wisdom in Europe and these for some peculiar reason have called themselves Fratres Rosa: Crucis. But soon afterwards came false schools into existence and corrupted the good intentions of these wise men. Therefore, the Order no longer exists as most people would understand existence, and as this Fraternity of the Seculo Fili call themselves Brothers of the Rosie Cross, so also will they in the Seculo Spiritus Sancti call themselves Brothers of the Lily Cross and the Knights of the White Lion. Then will the Schools of Wisdom begin again to blossom, but why the first one chose their name and why the others shall also choose theirs, only those can solve who have understanding grounded in Nature."

Political aspirations of the Rosicrucians were expressed through the activities of Sir Francis Bacon, the Comte de St.-Germain, and the Comte di Cagliostro. The last named is suspected of having been an emissary of the Knights Templars, a society deeply involved in transcendentalism, as Eliphas Levi has noted. There is a popular supposition to the effect that the Rosicrucians were at least partial instigators of the French Revolution. (Note particularly the introduction to Lord Bulwer-Lytton's Rosicrucian novel Zanoni.)

THE THIRD POSTULATE

The third theory takes the form of a sweeping denial of Rosicrucianism, asserting that the so-called original Order never had any foundation in fact but was entirely a product of imagination. This viewpoint is best expressed by a number of questions which are still being asked by investigators of this elusive group of metaphysicians. Was the "Brotherhood of the Rose Cross" merely a mythical institution created in the fertile mind of some literary cynic for the purpose of deriding the alchemical and Hermetic sciences? Did the "House of the Holy Spirit" ever exist outside the imagination of some mediæval mystic? Was the whole Rosicrucian story a satire to ridicule the gullibility of scholastic Europe? Was the mysterious Father C.R.C. a product of the literary genius of Johann Valentin Andreæ, or another of similar mind, who, attempting to score alchemical and Hermetic philosophy, unwittingly became a great power in furthering the cause of its promulgation? That at least one of the early documents of the Rosicrucians was from the pen of Andreæ there is little doubt, but for just what purpose he compiled it still remains a matter of speculation. Did Andreæ himself receive from some unknown person, or persons, instructions to be carried out? If he wrote the Chymical Nuptials of Christian Rosencreutz when only fifteen years old, was he overshadowed in the preparation of that book?

To these vital questions no answers are forthcoming. A number of persons accepted the magnificent imposture of Andreæ as absolute truth. It is maintained by many that, as a consequence, numerous pseudo-societies sprang up, each asserting that it was the organization concerning which the Fama Fraternitatis and the Confessio Fraternitatis were written. Beyond doubt there are many spurious orders in existence today; but few of them can offer valid claims that their history dates back farther than the beginning of the nineteenth century.

The mystery associated with the Rosicrucian Fraternity has resulted in endless controversy. Many able minds, notable among them Eugenius Philalethes, Michael Maier, John Heydon, and Robert Fludd, defended the concrete existence of "The Society of Unknown Philosophers." Others equally qualified have asserted it to be of fraudulent origin and doubtful existence. Eugenius Philalethes, while dedicating books to the Order, and himself writing an extended exposition of its principles, disclaims all personal connection with it. Many others have done likewise.

Some are of the opinion that Sir Francis Bacon had a hand in the writing of the Fama and Confessio Fraternitatis, on the basis that the rhetorical style of these works is similar to that of Bacon's New Atlantis. They also contend that certain statements in the latter work point to an acquaintance with Rosicrucian symbology. The elusiveness of the Rosicrucians has caused them to be favorite subject's for literary works. Outstanding among the romances which have been woven around them is Zanoni. The author, Lord Bulwer-Lytton, is regarded by some as a member of the Order, while others assert that he applied for membership but was rejected. Pope's Rape of the Lock, &c. Comte de Gabalis by Abbé de Villars, and essays by De Quincy, Hartmann, Jennings, Mackenzie, and others, are examples of Rosicrucian literature. Although the existence of these mediæval Rosicrucians is difficult to prove, sufficient evidence is at hand to make it extremely probable that there existed in Germany, and afterwards in France, Italy, England, and other European countries, a secret society of illuminated savants who made contributions of great import to the sum of human knowledge, while maintaining absolute secrecy concerning their personalities and their organization.

THE FOURTH POSTULATE

The apparent incongruities of the Rosicrucian controversy have also been accounted for by a purely transcendental explanation. There is evidence that early writers were acquainted with such a supposition--which, however, was popularized only after it had been espoused by Theosophy. This theory asserts that the Rosicrucians actually possessed all the supernatural powers with which they were credited; that they were in reality citizens of two worlds: that, while they had physical bodies for expression on the material plane, they were also capable, through the instructions they received from the Brotherhood, of functioning in a mysterious ethereal body not subject to the limitations of time or distance. By means of this "astral form" they were able to function in the invisible realm of Nature, and in this realm, beyond reach of the profane, their temple was located.

According to this viewpoint, the true Rosicrucian Brotherhood consisted of a limited number of highly developed adepts, or initiates, those of the higher degrees being no longer subject to the laws of mortality; candidates were accepted into the Order only after long periods of probation; adepts possessed the secret of the Philosopher's Stone and knew the process of transmuting the base metals into gold, but taught that these were only allegorical terms concealing the true mystery of human regeneration through the transmutation of the "base elements" of man's lower nature into the "gold" of intellectual and spiritual realization. According to this theory, those who have sought to record the events of importance in connection with the Rosicrucian controversy have invariably failed because they approached their subject from a purely physical or materialistic angle.

These adepts were believed to have been able to teach man how to function away from his physical body at will by assisting him to remove the "rose from the cross." They taught that the spiritual nature was attached to the material form at certain points, symbolized by the "nails" of the crucifixion; but by three alchemical initiations which took place in the spiritual world, in the true Temple of the Rose Cross, they were able to "draw" these nails and permit the divine nature of man to come down from its cross. They concealed the processes by which this was accomplished under three alchemical metaphoric expressions: "The Casting of the Molten Sea," "The Making of the Rose Diamond," and "The Achieving of the Philosopher's Stone."

While the intellectualist flounders among contradictory theories, the mystic treats the problem in an entirely different manner. He believes that the true Rosicrucian Fraternity, consisting of a school of supermen (not unlike the fabled Mahatmas of India), is an institution existing not in the visible world bur in its spiritual counterpart, which he sees fit to call the "inner planes of Nature"; that the Brothers can be reached only by those who are capable of transcending the limitations of the material world. To substantiate their viewpoint, these mystics cite the following significant statement from the Confessio Fraternitatis: "A thousand times the unworthy may clamour, a thousand times may present themselves, yet God hath commanded our ears that they should hear none of them, and hath so compassed us about with His clouds that unto us, His servants, no violence can be done; wherefore now no longer are we beheld by human eyes, unless they have received strength borrowed from the eagle." In mysticism the eagle is a symbol of initiation (the spinal Spirit Fire), and by this is explained the inability of the unregenerated world to understand the Secret Order of the Rose Cross.

Those professing this theory regard the Comte de St.-Germain as their highest adept and assert that he and Christian Rosencreutz were one and the same individual. They accept fire as their universal symbol because it was the one element by means of which they could control the metals. They declared themselves the descendants of Tubal-cain and Hiram Abiff, and that the purpose of their existence was to preserve the spiritual nature of man through ages of materiality. "The Gnostic sects, the Arabs, Alchemists, Templars, Rosicrucians, and lastly the Freemasons, form the Western chain in the transmission of occult science." (See The Tarot of the Bohemians translated by A. E. Waite from the French of Papus.)

Max Heindel, the Christian mystic, described the Rosicrucian Temple as an "etheric structure" located in and around the home of a European country gentleman. He believed that this invisible building would ultimately be moved to the American continent. Mr. Heindel referred to the Rosicrucian Initiates as so advanced in the science of life that "death had forgotten them."

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THE CREST OF JOHANN VALENTIN ANDREÆ.
From Chymische Hochzeit.
The reference to four red roses and a white cross in the Chymical Marriage of Christian Rosencreutz identified Johann Valentin Andreæ as its author, for his family crest, shown above, consisted of four red roses and a white cross.
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 1:00 am

Rosicrucian Doctrines and Tenets

TRUSTWORTHY information is unavailable concerning the actual philosophical beliefs, political aspirations, and humanitarian activities of the Rosicrucian Fraternity. Today, as of old, the mysteries of the Society are preserved inviolate by virtue of their essential nature; and attempts to interpret Rosicrucian philosophy are but speculations, anything to the contrary notwithstanding.

Evidence points to the probable existence of two distinct Rosicrucian bodies: an inner organization whose members never revealed their identity or teachings to the world, and an outer body under the supervision of the inner group. In all probability, the symbolic tomb of Christian Rosencreutz, Knight of the Golden Stone, was in reality this outer body, the spirit of which is in a more exalted sphere. For a period of more than a century subsequent to 1614, the outer body circulated tracts and manifestoes under either its own name or the names of various initiated members. The purpose of these writings was apparently to confuse and mislead investigators, and thus effectively to conceal the actual designs of the Fraternity.

When Rosicrucianism became the philosophical "fad" of the seventeenth century, numerous documents on the subject were also circulated for purely commercial purposes by impostors desirous of capitalizing its popularity. The cunningly contrived artifices of the Fraternity itself and the blundering literary impostures of charlatans formed a double veil behind which the inner organization carried on its activities in a manner totally dissimilar to its purposes and principles as publicly disseminated. The Fratres Rosa Crucis naively refer to the misunderstandings which they have for obvious reasons permitted to exist concerning themselves as being "clouds" within which they labor and behind which they are concealed.

An inkling of the substance of Rosicrucianism--its esoteric doctrines--can be gleaned from an analysis of its shadow--its exoteric writings. In one of the most important of their "clouds," the Confessio Fraternitatis, the Brethren of the Fraternity of R.C. seek to justify their existence and explain (?) the purposes and activities of their Order. In its original form the Confessio is divided into fourteen chapters, which are here epitomized.

CONFESSIO FRATERNITATIS R. C. AD ERUDITOS EUROPÆ

Chapter I. Do not through hasty judgment or prejudice misinterpret the statements concerning our Fraternity published in our previous manifesto--the Fama Fraternitatis. Jehovah, beholding the decadence of civilization, seeks to redeem humanity by revealing to the willing and by thrusting upon the reluctant those secrets which previously He had reserved for His elect. By this wisdom the godly shall be saved, but the sorrows of the ungodly shall be multiplied. While the true purpose of our Order was set forth in the Fama Fraternitatis, misunderstandings have arisen through which we have been falsely accused of heresy and treason. In this document we hope so to clarify our position that the learned of Europe will be moved to join with us in the dissemination of divine knowledge according to the will of our illustrious founder.

Chapter II. While it is alleged by many that the philosophic cide (sic. JBH) of our day is sound, we declare it to be false and soon to die of its own inherent weakness. just as Nature, however, provides a remedy for each new disease that manifests itself, so our Fraternity has provided a remedy for the infirmities of the world's philosophic system. The secret philosophy of the R.C. is founded upon that knowledge which is the sum and head of all faculties, sciences, and arts. By our divinely revealed system--which partakes much of theology and medicine but little of jurisprudence--we analyze the heavens and the earth; but mostly we study man himself, within whose nature is concealed the supreme secret. If the learned of out day will accept our invitation and join themselves to our Fraternity, we will reveal to them undreamed-of secrets and wonders concerning the hidden workings of Nature.

Chapter III. Do not believe that the secrets discussed in this brief document are lightly esteemed by us. We cannot describe fully the marvels of our Fraternity lest the uninformed be overwhelmed by our astonishing declarations and the vulgar ridicule the mysteries which they do not comprehend. We also fear that many will be confused by the unexpected generosity of our proclamation, for not understanding the wonders of this sixth age they do nor realize the great changes which are to come. Like blind men living in a world full of light, they discern only through the sense of feeling. [By sight is implied spiritual cognition: by feeling, the material senses.]

Chapter IV. We firmly believe that through deep meditation on the inventions of the human mind and the mysteries of life, through the cooperation of the angels and spirits, and through experience and long observation, our loving Christian Father C.R.C. was so fully illumined with God's wisdom that were all the books and writings of the world lost and the foundations of science overturned, the Fraternity of R.C. could reestablish the structure of world thought upon the foundation of divine truth and integrity. Because of the great depth and perfection of our knowledge, those desiring to understand the mysteries of the Fraternity of R. C. cannot attain to that wisdom immediately, but must grow in understanding and knowledge. Therefore, our Fraternity is divided into grades through which each must ascend step by step to the Great Arcanum. Now that it has pleased God to lighten unto us His sixth candelabrum, is it not better to seek truth in this way than to wander through the labyrinths of worldly ignorance?

Furthermore, those who receive this knowledge shall become masters of all arts and crafts; no secret shall be hidden from them; and all good works of the past, present, and future shall be accessible to them. The whole world shall become as one book and the contradictions of science and theology shall be reconciled. Rejoice, O humanity! for the time has come when God has decreed that the number of our Fraternity shall be increased, a labor that we have joyously undertaken. The doors of wisdom are now open to the world, but only to those who have earned the privilege may the Brothers present themselves, for it is forbidden to reveal our knowledge even to our own children. The right to receive spiritual truth cannot be inherited: it must be evolved within the soul of man himself.

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JOHANN VALENTIN ANDREÆ.
From a rare print.
In certain esoteric circles there are vague rumors which intimate that the humble personality of Johann Valentin Andreæ masked an exalted emissary of the Rose Cross. While there is sufficient evidence at hand to establish the actual existence of a German theologian by the name of Andreæ, there are many discrepancies in his biography which have net been cleared up to the satisfaction of critical investigators. A comparison of the face shown above with that of Sir Francis Bacon discloses striking resemblances in spite of the differences due to age. If Lord Bacon borrowed the name and identity of William Shakspere, he could also assume, after his mock funeral in England, the personality of Johann Valentin Andreæ. The crescent below the bust is significant, as it also appears upon the crest of Lord Bacon; to denote that he was the second son of Sir Nicholas Bacon. Further, the four letters (O MDC) in the frame at the lower right corner of the plate, by a very simple Baconian cipher, can be changed into number whose sum gives 33--the numerical equivalent of the name Bacon. These several points of interest, when considered together, go far towards clearing up the mystery surrounding the authorship of the first Rosicrucian manifestoes.


Chapter V. Though we may be accused of indiscretion in offering our treasures so freely and promiscuously--without discriminating between the godly, the wise, the prince, the peasant--we affirm that we have not betrayed our trust; for although we have published our Fama in five languages, only those understand it who have that right. Our Society is not to be discovered by curiosity seekers, but only by serious and consecrated thinkers; nevertheless we have circulated our Fama in five mother tongues so that the righteous of all nations may have an opportunity to know of us, even though they be not scholars. A thousand times the unworthy may present themselves and clamor at the gates, but God has forbidden us of the Fraternity of R.C. to hear their voices, and He has surrounded us with His clouds and His protection so that no harm may come to us, and God has decreed that we of the Order of R.C. can no longer be seen by mortal eyes unless they have received strength borrowed from the eagle. We further affirm that we shall reform the governments of Europe and pattern them according to the system applied by the philosophers of Damcar. All men desirous of securing knowledge shall receive as much as they are capable of understanding. The rule of false theology shall be overthrown and God shall make His will known through His chosen philosophers.

Chapter VII. Because of the need of brevity, it is enough to say that our Father C.R.C. was born in the year 1378 and departed at the age of 106, leaving to us the labor of spreading die doctrine of philosophic religion to the entire world. Our Fraternity is open to all who sincerely seek for truth; but we publicly warn the false and impious that they cannot betray or injure us, for God has protected our Fraternity, and all who seek to do it harm shall have their evil designs return and destroy them, while the treasures of our Fraternity shall remain untouched, to be used by the Lion in the establishment of his kingdom.

Chapter VII. We declare that God, before the end of the world, shall create a great flood of spiritual light to alleviate the sufferings of humankind. Falsehood and darkness which have crept into the arts, sciences, religions, and governments of humanity--making it difficult for even the wise to discover the path of reality--shall be forever removed and a single standard established, so that all may enjoy the fruitage of truth. We shall not be recognized as those responsible for this change, for people shall say that it is the result of the progressiveness of the age. Great are the reforms about to take place; but we of the Fraternity of R.C. do not arrogate to ourselves the glory for this divine reformation, since many there are, not members of our Fraternity but honest, true and wise men, who by their intelligence and their writings shall hasten its coming. We testify that sooner the stones shall rise up and offer their services than that there shall be any lack of righteous persons to execute the will of God upon earth.

Chapter VIII. That no one may doubt, we declare that God has sent messengers and signs in the heavens, namely, the i new stars in Serpentarius and Cygnus, to show that a great Council of the Elect is to take place. This proves that God reveals in visible nature--for the discerning few--signs and symbols of all things that are coming to pass. God has given man two eyes, two nostrils, and two ears, but only one tongue. Whereas the eyes, the nostrils, and the ears admit the wisdom of Nature into the mind, the tongue alone may give it forth. In various ages there have been illumined ones who have seen, smelt, tasted, or heard the will of God, but it will shortly come to pass that those who have seen, smelt, tasted, or heard shall speak, and truth shall be revealed. Before this revelation of righteousness is possible, however, the world must sleep away the intoxication of her poisoned chalice (filled with the false life of the theological vine) and, opening her heart to virtue and understanding, welcome the rising sun of Truth.

Chapter IX. We have a magic writing, copied from that divine alphabet with which God writes His will upon the face of celestial and terrestrial Nature. With this new language we read God's will for all His creatures, and just as astronomers predict eclipses so we prognosticate the obscurations of the church and how long they shall last. Our language is like unto that of Adam and Enoch before the Fall, and though we understand and can explain our mysteries in this our sacred language, we cannot do so in Latin, a tongue contaminated by the confusion of Babylon.

Chapter X. Although there are still certain powerful persons who oppose and hinder us--because of which we must remain concealed--we exhort those who would become of our Fraternity to study unceasingly the Sacred Scriptures, for such as do this cannot be far from us. We do not mean that the Bible should be continually in the mouth of man, but that he should search for its true and eternal meaning, which is seldom discovered by theologians, scientists, or mathematicians because they are blinded by the opinions of their sects. We bear witness that never since the beginning of the world has there been given to man a more excellent book than the Holy Bible. Blessed is he who possesses it, more blessed he who reads it, most blessed he who understands it, and most godlike he who obeys it.

Chapter XI. We wish the statements we made in the Fama Fraternitatis concerning the transmutation of metals and the universal medicine to be lightly understood. While we realize that both these works are attainable by man, we fear that many really great minds may be led away from the true quest of knowledge and understanding if they permit themselves to limit their investigation to the transmutation of metals. When to a man is given power to heal disease, to overcome poverty, and to reach a position of worldly dignity, that man is beset by numerous temptations and unless he possess true knowledge and full understanding he will become a terrible menace to mankind. The alchemist who attains to the art of transmuting base metals can do all manner of evil unless his understanding be as great as his self-created wealth. We therefore affirm that man must first gain knowledge, virtue, and understanding; then all other things may be added unto him. We accuse the Christian Church of the great sin of possessing power and using it unwisely; therefore we prophesy that it shall fall by the weight of its own iniquities and its crown shall be brought to naught.

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A SYMBOLIC DIAGRAM OF THE OPERATIONS OF NATURE.
From Fludd's Collectio Operum.
This plate, engraved by de Bry, is the most famous of the diagrams illustrating the philosophic principles of Robert Fludd (Robertus de Fluctibus). Three figures are outstanding links between Rosicrucianism and Freemasonry: Michael Maier, Elias Ashmole, and Robert Fludd. De Quincey considers Robert Fludd to be the immediate father of Freemasonry. (See The Rosicrucians and Freemasons.) Edward Waite considers Robert Fludd as second to none of the disciples of Paracelsus, even going as far as to declare that Fludd far surpassed his master. He further adds, "The central figure of Rosicrucian literature, towering as an intellectual giant above the crowd of souffleurs, theosophists, and charlatanic Professors of the magnum opus, who, directly or otherwise, were connected with the mysterious Brotherhood, is Robertus de Fluctibus, the great English mystical philosopher of the seventeenth century, a man of immense erudition, of exalted mind, and, to judge by his writings, of extreme personal sanctity. " (See The Real History of the Rosicrucians.) Robert Fludd was born in 1574 and died in 1637.
The de Bry diagram shown above is almost self-explanatory. Outside the circle of the starry heavens are the three fiery rings of the empyreum--the triple fire of the Supreme Creator--in which dwell the celestial creatures. Within he, of the stars are the circles of the planets and elements. After the element of air comes the circle of the world (earth). The circle of animals is followed by the circle of plants, which, in turn is followed by the circle of he minerals. Then come various industries and in the center is a terrestrial globe with an ape-man sitting upon it, measuring a sphere with a pair of compasses. This little figure represents the animal creation. In the outer ring of fire, above is the sacred name of Jehovah surrounded by clouds. From these clouds issues a hand holding a chain. Between the divine sphere and the lower world personified by the ape is the figure of a woman. It is to be specially noted that the female figure is merely holding the chain connecting her with the lower world, but the chain connecting her with the higher world ends in a shackle about her wrist. This female figure is capable of several interpretations: she may represent humanity suspended between divinity and the beast; she may represent Nature as the link between God and the lower world; or she may represent the human soul--the common denominator between the superior and the inferior.


Chapter XII. In concluding our Confessio, we earnestly admonish you to cast aside the worthless books of pseudo-alchemists and philosophers (of whom there are many in our age), who make light of the Holy Trinity and deceive the credulous with meaningless enigmas. One of the greatest of these is a stage player, a man with sufficient ingenuity for imposition. Such men are mingled by the Enemy of human welfare among those who seek to do good, thus making Truth more difficult of discovery. Believe us, Truth is simple and unconcealed, while falsehood is complex, deeply hidden, proud, and its fictitious worldly knowledge, seemingly a glitter with godly luster, is often mistaken for divine wisdom. You that are wise will turn from these false teachings and come to us, who seek not your money but freely offer you our greater treasure. We desire not your goods, but that you should become partakers of our goods. We do not deride parables, but invite you to understand all parables and all secrets. We do not ask you to receive us, but invite you to come unto our kingly houses and palaces, not because of ourselves but because we are so ordered by the Spirit of God, the desire of our most excellent Father C.R.C., and the need of the present moment, which is very great.

Chapter XIII. Now that we have made our position clear that we sincerely confess Christ; disavow the Papacy; devote our lives to true philosophy and worthy living; and daily invite and admit into our Fraternity the worthy of all nations, who thereafter share with us the Light of God: will you not join yourselves with us to the perfection of yourselves, the development of all the arts, and the service of the world? If you will take this step, the treasures of every part of the earth shall be at one time given unto you, and the darkness which envelopes human knowledge and which results in the vanities of material arts and sciences shall be forever dispelled.

Chapter XIV. Again we warn those who are dazzled by the glitter of gold or those who, now upright, might be turned by great riches to a life of idleness and pomp, not to disturb our sacred silence with their clamorings; for though there be a medicine which will cure all diseases and give unto all men wisdom, yet it is against the will of God that men should attain to understanding by any means other than virtue, labor, and integrity. We are not permitted to manifest ourselves to any man except it be by the will of God. Those who believe that they can partake of our spiritual wealth against the will of God or without His sanction will find that they shall sooner lose their lives in seeking us than attain happiness by finding us.

FRATERNITAS R.C.

Johann Valentin Andreæ is generally reputed to be the author of the Confessio. It is a much-mooted question, however, whether Andreæ did not permit his name to be used as a pseudonym by Sir Francis Bacon. Apropos of this subject are two extremely significant references occurring in the introduction to that remarkable potpourri, The Anatomy of Melancholy. This volume first appeared in 1621 from the pen of Democritus junior, who was afterwards identified as Robert Burton, who, in turn, was a suspected intimate of Sir Francis Bacon. One reference archly suggests that at the time of publishing The Anatomy of Melancholy in 1621 the founder of the Fraternity of R.C. was still alive. This statement--concealed from general recognition by its textual involvement--has escaped the notice of most students of Rosicrucianism. In the same work there also appears a short footnote of stupendous import. It contains merely the words: "Job. Valent. Andreas, Lord Verulam." This single line definitely relates Johann Valentin Andreæ to Sir Francis Bacon, who was Lord Verulam, and by its punctuation intimates that they are one and the same individual.

Prominent among Rosicrucian apologists was John Heydon, who inscribes himself "A Servant of God, and a Secretary of Nature." In his curious work, The Rosie Cross Uncovered, he gives an enigmatic but valuable description of the Fraternity of R.C. in the following language:

"Now there are a kind of men, as they themselves report, named Rosie Crucians, a divine fraternity that inhabit the suburbs of heaven, and these are the officers of the Generalissimo of the world, that are as the eyes and ears of the great King, seeing and hearing all things: they say these Rosie Crucians are seraphically illuminated, as Moses was, according to this order of the elements, earth refin'd to water, water to air, air to fire." He further declares that these mysterious Brethren possessed polymorphous powers, appearing in any desired form at will. In the preface of the same work, he enumerates the strange powers of the Rosicrucian adepts:

"I shall here tell you what Rosie Crucians are, and that Moses was their Father, and he was Θεοῦ παῖς; some say they were of the order of Elias, some say the Disciples of Ezekiel; * * * For it should seem Rosie Crucians were not only initiated into the Mosaical Theory, but have arrived also to the power of working miracles, as Moses, Elias, Ezekiel, and the succeeding Prophets did, as being transported where they please, as Habakkuk was from Jewry to Babylon, or as Philip, after he had baptized the Eunuch to Azorus, and one of these went from me to a friend of mine in Devonshire, and came and brought me an answer to London the some day, which is four days journey; they caught me excellent predictions of Astrology and Earthquakes; they slack the Plague in Cities; they silence the violent Winds and Tempests; they calm the rage of the Sea and Rivers; they walk in the Air, they frustrate the malicious aspects of Witches; they cure all Diseases."

The writings of John Heydon are considered a most important contribution to Rosicrucian literature. John Heydon was probably related to Sir Christopher Heydon, "a Seraphically Illuminated Rosie Crucian, " whom the late F. Leigh Gardner, Hon. Secretary Sec. Ros. in Anglia, believes to have been the source of his Rosicrucian knowledge. In his Bibliotheca Rosicruciana he makes the following statement concerning John Heydon: "On the whole, from the internal evidence of his writings, he appears to have gone through the lower grade of the R. C. Order and to have given out much of this to the world." John Heydon traveled extensively, visiting Arabia, Egypt, Persia, and various parts of Europe, as related in a biographical introduction to his work, The Wise-Mans Crown, Set with Angels, Planets, Metals, etc., or The Glory of the Rosie Cross--a work declared by him to be a translation into English of the mysterious book M brought from Arabia by Christian Rosencreutz.

Thomas Vaughan (Eugenius Philalethes), another champion of the Order, corroborates the statement of John Heydon concerning the ability of the Rosicrucian initiates to make themselves invisible at will: "The Fraternity of R.C. can move in this white mist. 'Whosoever would communicate with us must be able to see in this light, or us he will never see unless by our own will.'"

The Fraternity of R.C. is an august and sovereign body, arbitrarily manipulating the symbols of alchemy, Qabbalism, astrology, and magic to the attainment of its own peculiar purposes, but entirely independent of the cults whose terminology it employs. The three major objects of the Fraternity are:

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THE ALCHEMICAL ANDROGYNE
From the Turbæ Philosophorum.
The Turbæ Philosophorum is one of the earliest known documents on alchemy in the Latin tongue. Its exact origin is unknown. It is sometimes referred to as The Third Pythagorical Synod. As its name implies, it is an assembly of the sages and sets forth the alchemical viewpoints of many of the early Greek philosophers. The symbol reproduced above is from a rare edition of the Turbæ Philosophorum published in Germany in 1750, and represents by a hermaphroditic figure the accomplishment of the magnum opus. The active and passive principles of Nature were often depicted by male and female figures, and when these two principle, were harmoniously conjoined in any one nature or body it was customary to symbolize this state of perfect equilibrium by the composite figure above shown.


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A ROSICRUCIAN TITLE PAGE.
From Maier's Viatorium.
Count Michael Maier, physician to Rudolph II., was an outstanding figure in the Rosicrucian controversy. There is little doubt that he was an initiated member of the Rosicrucian Fraternity, empowered by the Order to promulgate its secrets among the philosophic elect of Europe. The above title page shows the seven planets represented by appropriate figures. Behind the central figure in each case is a smaller emblem, signifying the zodiacal sign in which the planet is enthroned. In the arch over the title itself is a portrait of the learned Maier. The volume of which this is the title page is devoted to an analysis of the nature and effect of the seven planets, and is couched in alchemical terminology throughout. Michael Maier concealed his knowledge so cunningly that it is exceedingly difficult to tract from his writings the secrets which he possessed. He was profuse in his use of emblems and the greater part of his philosophical lore is concealed in the engravings which illustrate his books.


1. The abolition of all monarchical forms of government and the substitution therefor of the rulership of the philosophic elect. The present democracies are the direct outgrowth of Rosicrucian efforts to liberate the maws from the domination of despotism. In the early part of the eighteenth century the Rosicrucians turned their attention to the new American Colonies, then forming the nucleus of a great nation in the New World. The American War of Independence represents their first great political experiment and resulted in the establishment of a national government founded upon the fundamental principles of divine and natural law. As an imperishable reminder of their sub rosa activities, the Rosicrucians left the Great Seal of the United States. The Rosicrucians were also the instigators of the French Revolution, but in this instance were not wholly successful, owing to the fact that the fanaticism of the revolutionists could not be controlled and the Reign of Terror ensued.

2. The reformation of science, philosophy, and ethics. The Rosicrucians declared that the material arts and sciences were but shadows of the divine wisdom, and that only by penetrating the innermost recesses of Nature could man attain to reality and understanding. Though calling themselves Christians, the Rosicrucians were evidently Platonists and also profoundly versed in the deepest mysteries of early Hebrew and Hindu theology. There is undeniable evidence that the Rosicrucians desired to reestablish the institutions of the ancient Mysteries as the foremost method of instructing humanity in the secret and eternal doctrine. Indeed, being in all probability the perpetuators of the ancient Mysteries, the Rosicrucians were able to maintain themselves against the obliterating forces of dogmatic Christianity only by absolute secrecy and the subtlety of their subterfuges. They so carefully guarded and preserved the Supreme Mystery--the identity and interrelationship of the Three Selves--that no one to whom they did not of their own accord reveal themselves has ever secured any satisfactory information regarding either the existence or the purpose of the Order. The Fraternity of R.C., through its outer organization, is gradually creating an environment or body in which the Illustrious Brother C.R.C. may ultimately incarnate and consummate for humanity the vast spiritual and material labors of the Fraternity.

3. The discovery of the Universal Medicine, or panacea, for all forms of disease. There is ample evidence that the Rosicrucians were successful in their quest for the Elixir of Life. In his Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum, Elias Ashmole states that the Rosicrucians were not appreciated in England, but were welcomed on the Continent. He also states that Queen Elizabeth was twice cured of the smallpox by the Brethren of the Rosy Cross, and that the Earl of Norfolk was healed of leprosy by a Rosicrucian physician. In the quotations that follow it is .hinted by John Heydon that the Brothers of the Fraternity possessed the secret of prolonging human existence indefinitely, but not beyond the time appointed by the will of God:

"And at last they could restore by the same course every Brother that died to life again, and so continue many ages; the rules you find in the fourth book. * * * After this manner began the Fraternity of the Rosie Cross, first by four persons, who died and rose again until Christ, and then they came to worship as the Star guided them to Bethlehem of Judea, where lay our Saviour in his mother's arms; and then they opened their treasure and presented unto him gifts, gold, frankincense, and myrrh, and by the commandment of God went home to their habitation. These four waxing young again successively many hundreds of years, made a magical language and writing, with a large dictionary, which we yet daily use to God's praise and glory, and do find great wisdom therein. * * * Now whilst Brother C.R. was in a proper womb quickening, they concluded to draw and receive yet others more into their Fraternity."

The womb herein referred to was apparently the glass casket, or container, in which the Brothers were buried. This was also called the philosophical egg. After a certain period of time the philosopher, breaking the shell of his egg, came forth and functioned for a prescribed period, after which he retired again into his shell of glass, The Rosicrucian medicine for the healing of all human infirmities may be interpreted either as a chemical substance which produces the physical effects described or as spiritual understanding--the true healing power which, whet a man has partaken of it, reveals truth to him. Ignorance is the worst form of disease, and that: which heals ignorance is therefore the most potent of all medicines. The perfect Rosicrucian medicine was for the healing of nations, races, and individuals.

In an early unpublished manuscript, an unknown philosopher declares alchemy, Qabbalism, astrology, and magic to have been divine sciences originally, but that through perversion they had become false doctrines, leading seekers after wisdom ever farther from their goal. The same author gives a valuable key to esoteric Rosicrucianism by dividing the path of spiritual attainment into three steps, or schools, which he calls mountains. The first and lowest of these mountains is Mount Sophia; the second, Mount Qabbalah; and the third, Mount Magia. These three mountains are sequential stages of spiritual growth. The unknown author then states:

"By philosophy is to be understood the knowledge of the workings of Nature, by which knowledge man learns to climb to those higher mountains above the limitations of sense. By Qabbalism is to be understood the language of the angelic or celestial beings, and he who masters it is able to converse with the messengers of God. On the highest of the mountains is the School of Magia (Divine Magic, which is the language of God) wherein man is taught the true nature of all things by God Himself."

There is a growing conviction that if the true nature of Rosicrucianism were divulged, it would cause consternation, to say the least. Rosicrucian symbols have many meanings, but the Rosicrucian meaning has not yet been revealed. The mount upon which stands the House of the Rosy Cross is still concealed by clouds, in which the Brethren hide both themselves and their secrets. Michael Maier writes: "What is contained in the Fama and Confessio is true. It is a very childish objection that the brotherhood have promised so much and performed so little. With them, as elsewhere, many are called but few are chosen. The masters of the order hold out the rose as the remote prize, but they impose the cross on those who are entering." (See Silentium post Clamores, by Maier, and The Rosicrucians and the Freemasons, by De Quincey.)

The rose and the cross appear upon the stained glass windows of Lichfield Chapter House, where Walter Conrad Arensberg believes Lord Bacon and his mother to have been buried. A crucified rose within a heart is watermarked into the dedication page of the 1628 edition of Robert Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy.

The fundamental symbols of the Rosicrucians were the rose and the cross; the rose female and the cross male, both universal phallic emblems. While such learned gentlemen as Thomas Inman, Hargrave Jennings, and Richard Payne Knight have truly observed that the rose and the cross typify the generative processes, these scholars seem unable to pierce the veil of symbolism; they do not realize that the creative mystery in the material world is merely a shadow of the divine creative mystery in the spiritual world. Because of the phallic significance of their symbols, both the Rosicrucians and the Templars have been falsely accused of practicing obscene rites in their secret ceremonials. While it is quite true that the alchemical retort symbolizes the womb, it also has a far more significant meaning concealed under the allegory of the second birth. As generation is the key to material existence, it is natural that the Fraternity of R.C. should adopt as its characteristic symbols those exemplifying the reproductive processes. As regeneration is the key to spiritual existence, they therefore founded their symbolism upon the rose and the cross, which typify the redemption of man through the union of his lower temporal nature with his higher eternal nature. The rosy cross is also a hieroglyphic figure representing the formula of the Universal Medicine.

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THE ELEMENTARY WORLD.
From Musæum Hermeticum Reformatum et Amplificatum.
The outer circle contains the figures of the Zodiac; the second, their signs and that part of the human body which they rule; the third, the months of the year, with brief notes concerning temperaments, etc. The fourth circle contains the elements accompanied by their appropriate symbols, and the following seven circles mark the orbits of the planets; also the planetary angels, the seven major members of the Universal Man, and the seven metals, each division appearing under its appropriate element according to the elemental names in the fourth circle. In the twelfth circle appear the words: "There are Three Principles, Three Worlds, Three Ages, and Three Kingdoms." In the thirteenth circle appear the names of the twelve arts and sciences which are considered essential to spiritual growth. In the fourteenth circle is the word Nature. The fifteenth circle contains the following words. "It is the great honour of faithful souls, that from their very birth an angel is appointed to preserve and keep each of them." (See first English translation, London, 1893.)
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 1:05 am

Fifteen Rosicrucian and Qabbalistic Diagrams

IN his well-known work, The Rosicrucians, Their Rites and Mysteries, Hargrave Jennings reproduces five Qabbalistic charts which he declares to be genuine Rosicrucian drawings. He gives no information concerning their origin nor does he attempt an elucidation of their symbolism. A recent writer who reproduced one of these charts correlated it to the emblematic tomb of Father C.R.C., thus exposing the true nature of Christian Rosencreutz.

The five plates reproduced in Hargrave Jennings' book are part of a series of fifteen diagrams which appear in The Magical, Qabbalistical, and Theosophical Writings of Georgius von Welling, on the Subject of Salt, Sulphur, and Mercury. This extremely rare volume was published at Frankfort and Leipzig in 1735 and 1760. The numbers and figures on the charts refer to the chapters and sections of the Writings. These fifteen charts constitute a remarkable and invaluable addition to the few other known admittedly authentic Qabbalistic and Rosicrucian diagrams.

Lucifer is the greatest mystery of symbolism. The secret knowledge of the Rosicrucians concerning Lucifer is nowhere so plainly set forth as in these plates, which virtually reveal his true identity, a carefully guarded secret about which little has been written. Lucifer is represented by the number 741.

Von Welling does not give a complete exposition of the fifteen charts; to have done so would have been contrary to the principles of Qabbalistic philosophy. The deeper significance of the symbols is revealed only by profound study and contemplation.

TABLE I, Figures 1-11. Figure 1 is a Ptolemaic chart showing the true relationship existing between the primordial elements. Its secret significance is as follows: The outer ring enclosed by the lines A and B is the region of Schamayim, a Qabbalistic name for the Supreme Deity, signifying the expanse of the heavens, or a spiritual fiery water. Schamayim is "The Ocean of Spirit, " within which all created and uncreated things exist and by the life of which they are animated. In the lower worlds Schamayim becomes the astral light.

The space between B and C marks the orbits or planes of the seven Spiritual Intelligences called the Divine Planets (not the visible planets). According to the Mysteries, the souls of men enter the lower worlds through ring B, the fixed stars. All creation reflects the glory of Schamayim, the energy that filters into the spheres of the elements through the windows of the stars and planets. Between C and D lies the region of the subtle, spiritual air, a subdivision of ether. D to E marks the surface of the earth and sea, by which are also meant grades of ether. E to F marks the lower region, called "The Gathering of the Waters and the Production of the Virgin Earth, " or "Ares. " The alchemists called this "quicksand," the true mystic foundation of the solid earth. F to G marks the circle of the subterranean air, which is more dense and coarse than that in the outer space, C to D. In this denser atmosphere the stellar influences and celestial impulses are crystallized into corporeal spirits, thus forming the multitude of forms which exist without knowledge of their own fiery source. G is the region of the central fire of the element earth, a coarse fire in contradistinction to the divine fiery Schamayim. The sphere of the starry heavens likewise has its opposite in the sphere of the subterranean air; and the sphere of the upper air (or subtle vaporous water) has its opposite in the sphere E to F. The focal point, D to E, between the three higher and the three lower spheres, is called "The Reservoir." It receives impressions from both the superior and the inferior regions and is common to both.

Figure 2 is the Qabbalistic symbol of elemental water; Figure 9 represents the spiritual invisible water. Figure 3 is the Qabbalistic symbol of elemental air; Figure 7 represents the spiritual and invisible air. Figure 4 is the Qabbalistic sign of the elemental earth; Figure 8 represents the spiritual and invisible earth. Figure 5 is the Qabbalistic sign of the elemental fire; Figure 6 represents the spiritual and invisible fire. Figures 6, 7, 8, and 9 symbolize the four elements before the descent of Lucifer. They are the four rivers spoken of in Genesis, having their source in the one river, Figure W, which represents the elements superimposed on one another. The golden ball in the center is Schamayim, the fiery source of all elements. Figure 11 is the emblem of the beginning and the end of all creatures. From it all things proceed and to it all must return again, to become one with the fiery water of divine understanding.

TABLE II, Figures 12-51. Figures 12, 13, 14 demonstrate the sphere as a symbol of motion to be emblematic of fire, water, and air; and the cube as a symbol of weight to be emblematic of earth. The sphere rests upon a point, the cube upon a surface; the sphere is therefore used to symbolize spirit, and the cube, matter. Figure 14 demonstrates that atmosphere rushing in behind a falling object increases its velocity and apparently adds to its weight. The essential nature of each element is occultly signified by the peculiar symbol and character assigned to it.

Of Figure 15, the symbol of salt, von Welling writes, in substance: The cube has six sides, corresponding to the six days of creation, with the point of rest (the seventh day) in the center of the cube. On each surface of the cube appear the signs of the four elements [triangles]. The alchemists declared that salt was the first created substance produced by the fire (Schamayim) which flowed out of God. In salt all creation is concentrated; in salt are the beginning and end of all things. The cube, furthermore, is composed of twelve bodies, each of which has six sides. These bodies are the twelve fundamental pillars of the true invisible church, and when these twelve bodies are multiplied by their six sides the magical number 72 results. The wise have said that nothing is perfect until it has been dissolved, separated, and again united so that it becomes a body composed of twelve bodies, like the cube. The cube also consists of six pyramids with the six surfaces of the cube as their bases. The points of these six pyramids meet at the center of the cube. These six pyramids, each consisting of four triangles, signify the elements, and produce the magical number 24, which refers to the Elders before the Throne. The six surfaces and the point constitute the magical number 7. If 7 be multiplied by 7 again, and so on 7 times, the answer will reveal the method used by the ancients for measuring the periods of eternity; thus: (1) 7 X 7 = 49; (2) 49 X 7 = 343; (3) 343 X 7 = 2,401; (4) 2,401 X 7 = 16,807; (5):16,807 X 7 = 117,649; (6) 117,649 X 7 = 823,543; (7) 823,543 X 7 = 5,764,801. (This is not to be taken as earth years or times.) The 5,000, 000 represents the great hall year; the 700,000 the great Sabbath year, wherein all human beings gradually gain true understanding and become heirs to their original and eternal inheritance, which was lost when they were enmeshed in the lower elements. The 64,800 is the number of the fallen angels, and the last one year signifies the liberation of Lucifer and return to his original estate.

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TABLE I, Figures 1-11.

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TABLE II, Figures 12-51.

Figure 16 is another symbol of salt, while Figure 17 (the dot) is the sign of spirit, gold, the sun, or the germ of life. If the dot be moved before itself it becomes a line, Figure 18. This motion of the dot is the first motion. The beginning and end of every line is a dot. Figure 19 is the circle. It is the second motion and the most perfect of all lines. Out of it are formed all figures and bodies imaginable. Figure 20 represents the outpouring of the upper and spiritual life into manifestation. Figure 21 represents darkness, for it is the loosening of the subterrene destructive principle. Figure 20 is also the symbol of day, and Figure 21 of night.

Figure 22 is a symbol of water; Figure 23 is the complete universal character of light and darkness. The upright triangle represents Schamayim; the inverted triangle the dark earth which imprisons the infernal subterranean fire. It is "The First Day of Creation," or the time of the separation of Schamayim and Ares. Figure 24 represents the six days of creation and proves that the elements are an outflow of the Divine Fire which, breaking up, becomes the substances of the tangible universe, as signified in Figure 25.

Figure 26 is the character of the air, showing that air is born out of the Eternal Light and the ethereal water. Figure 27 is the character of water. It is the inversion of Figure 26, indicating that its origin is from the lower fire and not the higher. Its upper part signifies that water does not lack the Divine element, but as a universal mirror reflects the heavenly influences. Figures 28 and 29 are symbols of salt, showing that it is both fire and water in one. Figure 30 is the character of fire in all its attributes, and Figure M (the same inverted), water in all its powers. Figure 32 is the character of salt in all its attributes. Figure 33 represents both gold and the sun. Their essential natures are identical, being formed from the first fire out of Schamayim. They are perfect, as can be seen from their symbol, for no more perfect form can be produced out of the dot than the circle.

Figure 34 is the character of the greater and lesser worlds; as the dot is surrounded by its circumference, this world is surrounded by Schamayim. Man (the Little World) is included in this symbol because his inner nature is potential gold (Aphar Min Haadamah), which gold is his eternal indestructible spiritual body. Gold is the masculine principle of the universe.

Figure 35 is the character of silver and the moon. It signifies that silver (like gold) is a perfect metal, except that the red part of its nature is turned inward. Silver is the feminine principle of the universe.

Figure 36 is the character of copper and Venus; Figure 37, of iron and Mars; Figure 38, of tin and Jupiter; Figure 39, of lead and Saturn; Figure 40, of Mercury (both the planet and the element); Figure 41, of antimony, the key metal of the earth itself; Figure 42, of arsenic; Figure 43, of sulphur; Figure 44, of cinnabar; Figure 45, of quicklime; Figure 46, of nitre; and Figure 47, of vitriol. Figure 48 is the character of sal ammoniac, which element derives its name from the Temple of Jupiter Ammon in an Egyptian desert, where it was found. Figure 49 is the character of alum; Figure 50, of alkali, a name of Arabian origin; and Figure 51, of sal tartar, a substance possessing great occult virtue.

TABLE Ill, Figure 52. The eight globes and the central square represent the seven days of creation. The three worlds wherein creation occurs are symbolized by three concentric rings. The German words in the outer ring are extracts from the first chapter of Genesis. The words around the outside of the outer ring are The First Day. The four small globes inside the outer ring deal with the abstract phases of creation. The upper globe containing the triangle encloses the words Heaven and Earth. The globe to the right contains the word Light, and the one to the left, Jehovah Elohim in the upper part and Darkness in the lower part. The globe at the bottom contains the word Day in the upper half and Night in the lower.

The four globes within the second ring depict the second, third, fourth, and fifth days of creation. The white globe above divided by a dotted line is designated The Second Day; the globe to the left with the mountains, The Third Day; the globe to the right with the planetary rings, The Fourth Day; and the globe below bisected by a dotted line, The Fifth Day. The square in the central ring containing the human form is marked The Sixth Day. This chart is a diagrammatic exposition of the three layers of the macrocosmic and microcosmic auric eggs, showing the forces active within them.

TABLE IV, Figure. 53. Figure 53 has been designated the symbolic tomb of Christian Rosencreutz. The upper circle is the first world--the Divine Sphere of God. The triangle in the center is the throne of God. The small circles at the points of the star symbolize the seven great Spirits before the throne, mentioned in the Book of Revelation, in the midst of which walks the Alpha and Omega--the Son of God. The central triangle contains three flames--the Divine Trinity. From the lowest of these flames proceeds the first divine outflow, shown by two parallel lines descending through the throne of Saturn (the Spirit Orifelis, through whom God manifested Himself). Passing through the boundary of the celestial universe and the 22 spheres of the lower system, the lines end at point B, the throne of Lucifer, in whom the divine outpouring is concentrated and reflected. From him the divine light irradiates in succession to d (Capricorn), e (Gemini), f (Libra), g (Taurus), h (Pisces), i (Aquarius), k (Cancer), l (Virgo), m (Aries), n (Leo), o (Scorpio), p (Sagittarius), thence back to d. The zodiacal circles represent twelve orders of great and beneficent Spirits, and the smaller circles within the ring of fixed stars mark the orbits of the sacred planets.

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Table III, Figure 52

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Table IV, Figure 53

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Table V, Figure 54

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Table VII, Figures 1-5, 7 and 8

TABLE V, Figure 54. Figure 54 is similar to Figure 53, but represents the universe at the time God manifested Himself through the character of Jupiter, the Spirit Sachasiel. Von Welling gives no reason for the change in the order of influx into the twelve orders of spirits, for the third world, for the adding of another circle and the interlaced triangles in the upper world, or for the letters Y and Z. In the upper triangle, A represents the Father Principle, F the divine outflow, G the point of influx into the twelve orders of spirits (probably Sagittarius). The letters H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, S, and T denote the sequential points of irradiations to each other; W and X, the World of the Sons of God; and B, C, D, and E, the World of Lucifer. This plate shows the universe after the descent of Lucifer into matter. According to von Welling, when Lucifer wanted to control power, the influx of the divine light instantly ceased. Lucifer's world (which later became the solar system), with all its legions of spirits (who in their essence were Schamayim) reflecting his ideas and inverting the divine light, was turned into darkness. Lucifer's Schamayim thereupon became a contracted disc, a tangible substance; and Chaos came into existence.

TABLE VI, Figures 55-59. Figure 55 symbolizes the Chaos of Lucifer; Figure 56, the separation of light from darkness; Figure 57, the light in the midst of the darkness; and Figure 58, the regions of the elements and their inhabitants. The four A's signify the Abyss surrounding all things. The A B is the fiery throne of Lucifer. The plane of g is the subterranean air; f, the subterranean water; c, the earth region; d, the outer water; e, the outer air, W and X the region of Schamayim. The elemental inhabitants of the planes differ in goodness according to their proximity to the center of wickedness (A B). The earth's surface (c) divides the subterranean elementals from those of the outer water, air, and fire (d, c, and X). The elementals of the upper strata (the upper half of c, and all of d, e, and X) represent an ascending scale of virtue, while those of the lower strata (the lower half of c, and all of f, g, and A B) represent a descending scale of depravity.

The region of air (e) is a partial exception to this order. While air is close to the light and filled with beautiful spirits, it is also the habitation of Beelzebub, the Evil Spirit of the air, with his legion of elemental demons. Upon the subtle element of air are impressed the influences of the stars; the thoughts, words, and deeds of man; and a myriad of mysterious influences from the various planes of Nature. Man inhales these impressions, and they produce diverse effects upon his mind. In air are suspended also the seed germs by which water is impregnated and made capable of bringing forth forms of organic and inorganic life. The grotesque figures seen in crystal caves and frost pictures upon windows are caused by these aerial impressions. While the air elementals are great and wise, they are treacherous and confused because amenable to both good and evil impressions. The mighty elemental beings who inhabit the watery light fire of the region X cannot be deceived by the spirits of darkness. They love the creatures of the waters, for the watery element (d) proceeded from the fiery water (X). Mortal man cannot endure the society of these fiery spirits, but gains wisdom from them through the creatures of the waters in which they continually mirror themselves. Figure 59 represents this solar system, with W and X as the locality of the Garden of Eden.

TABLE VII, Figures 1-5, 7, 8. (Table VIII has Figure 6.) Figure 1 is the triune divine sulphur, the All-Perfect out of the All-Perfect, the Soul of creatures. The threefold Divine One is symbolized by three interlaced circles designated alchemically salt, sulphur, and mercury. In the central triangle is the divine name Ehieh. Geist means spirit. The other words require no translation. Figure 2 is common destructive sulphur. A bar placed in the triangle makes it the character of earth. Figure 3 is true oil of vitriol, composed of a circle with two diameters and two reversed half-circles hanging below. In this are hidden the characters of all metals. Tin is symbolized by Figure 4 and iron by Figure 5. Figure 7 is the solar system according to Copernicus. Figure 8 is the last judgment. The sun is removed from the center of the solar system and replaced by the earth. This changes the respective positions of all the other planets except Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, which retain their respective circles. The letter a signifies the circle of the sun; b, that of Mercury; c, that of Venus; d, (sic) that of the moon; and E, that of the earth. Inward from the sphere h are the great circles of damnation.

TABLE VII., Figure 6. In Figure 6 the letter a marks the center of eternity. The motion of the rays toward b, d, and c was the first divine manifestation and is symbolized by the equilateral triangle, b, d, c. The eternal world within the inner circle became manifest in the water (salt), the light (mercury), and the fire (sulphur) of the archetypal world, represented by the three circles (f, e, g) within the triangle of complete equality (h, i, k), which is in turn surrounded by the circle of the high throne. The circle f is named understanding; e, wisdom; g, reason. In circle i is the word Father; in circle h, Son; in circle k, Spirit. The seven outer circles are the seven spirits before the throne. The lower part of the figure is similar to Figures 53 and 54. The outer circles are the angelic world ending in the cognizable world of the Sons of God. Then comes the circle of the visible constellations and fixed stars; within this is the solar system with the sun as the center (l). Ungrund means the Abyss.

TABLE IX, Figure 9. Figure 9 is a synthesis of the Old and New Testaments and represents the interblending planes of being. In the right margin the seven outer circles contain the names of the planetary angels. The words in the graduated circles from the top triangle downward read: (1) Abyss of Compassion; (2) Zion; (3) The New Heaven and the New Earth; (4) The New Jerusalem; (5) Paradise; (6) The Bosom of Abraham; (7) The Outer Courts of the Lord. From below the circles of darkness reach upward, each divine principle being opposed by an infernal opposite. The small circle on the left containing a triangle and cross is named The Tree of Life, and that on the right The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. In the center of the diagram is the Trinity, joined with the superior and inferior planes by lines of activity.

TABLE X, Figures 10-15. Figure 10 shows the New Jerusalem in form of a cube, with the names of the twelve tribes of Israel written on the twelve lines of the cube. In the center is the eye of God. The words round the outer circle are from the Book of Revelation. Figures 11, 12, 13, 14, and 15 possibly are cipher symbols of the angels of the plagues, the name of the Antichrist, the signature of the beast of Babylon, and the name of the woman riding on the beast of blasphemy.

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Table VIII, Figure 6.

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Table X, Figures 10-15.

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Table IX, Figure 9.

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Table XI, Figures 1-11

TABLE XI, Figures 1.-11. Figure 1 is the solar system according to Genesis. The o on top of the radius of the circle is the dot of Eternity--the Beginning of Beginnings. The whole diameter is the outflow of God, manifesting first in the heaven of heavens--the Schamayim, in which region human understanding cannot function. The space from k to i contains the heavens of Saturn, Jupiter, and Mars; l to m, the heavens of Venus and Mercury; m to h, the heavens of the sun. The letter e is the moon, the circle of the earth.

Figure 2 is the globe of the earth, showing the houses and signs of the zodiac. Figure 3 is the character of the Universal Mercury (Divine Life) in its triune aspect of mercury, sulphur, and salt. Figure 4 is true saltpetre purified with quicklime and alkali. Figure 5 shows the exact degree or angle of the planets' places as well as the individual fixed stars in the zodiac. The letter a is the sun and b is the earth. From k to i are the circles of Mercury and Venus; g to h, the circles of earth and moon; f to e and e to c, of Jupiter and Saturn; c to d, the starry belt or zodiac. Figure 6 is the Microcosm, with the planets and signs of the zodiac corresponding to the different parts of its form. The words upon the figure read: Know thyself. In words, herbs, and stones lies a great power. Figure 7 is the universal character from which all characters have been taken. Figures 8, 9, and 10 are left to the solution of the reader. Figure 11 is the radiating Universal Mercury.

TABLE XII, Figures 12-19. Figure 12 is called A Mirror of Astrological Aspects. Below it is an astrologer's wheel. Figure 13 is similar to Figure 12. Figure 14 is a secret alchemical formula. The words around the circle read: Out of one in all is all. Figure 15 is an unsatisfactory attempt to show the comparative sizes of the suns and planets and their distances from each other. Figure 16 is the solar system with its internal and spiritual heavens. A B is the solar system; C is the sphere of fixed stars; D, E, F, G are the systems of the spiritual worlds; H is the throne of the living God; J, K, L, M, and N are the Great Beyond, unmeasurable.

Figure 17 shows the creation of the solar system out of the ring of the Divine Eternity. The four A's are the Abyss, B is the first revelation of God out of the Abyss, and from this revelation C, D, E, F, and G were created. C and D represent the spiritual hierarchies; D and E, the upper worlds, or constellations; E and F, the distance from Jupiter to the upper worlds; F and G, the solar system with its planets and their heavens; B and C the throne of Christ.

Figure 18 describes the division according to Genesis of the waters above the heavens (D) from the waters below (A, B, and C). Figure 19 is the mercury of the philosophers, essential to material existence.

TABLE XIII, Figures 1-4. Figure 1 is Ain Soph, the Incomprehensible Abyss of Divine Majesty, an endless welling up, limitless in time and space. Figure 2 symbolizes the three Divine Principles--Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Around the triangle is written: I Shall Be That I Shall Be. At the apex of the triangle is the word Crown; in the left point, Wisdom; in the right point, Understanding. Figure 3 represents the Trinity with its outflow. The words above the upper sphere are Revelation of the Divine Majesty in Jehovah Elohim. The lower circles contain the names of the Hierarchies controlling the lower worlds. The words within the circle of stars read: Lucifer the Son of the Aurora of the morning. The letter C represents the Universal Mercury. The words within the circle read: The first beginning of all creatures. Figure 4 represents the abode of Lucifer and his angels, the Chaos spoken of in Genesis.

TABLE XIV, Figures 5, 7, 8. Figure 5 shows the triangle of triune Divinity in the midst of a cross. At the left is a small triangle containing the words The Secrets of Elohim, and at the right is another inscribed The Secrets of Nature. On the horizontal arms of the cross are the words The Tree of Life and The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The plate explains the interblending of the spiritual and infernal powers in the creation of the universe. Figure 7 is called The Road to Paradise. It probably indicates the positions of the sun, moon, and planets at the moment of their genesis. Figure 8 is the earth before the flood, when it was watered by a mist or vapor. The words at the left are The Tree of Life; those at the right, The Tree of the Knowledge of good and Evil. The diagram with the symbol of Mars is devoted to a consideration of the rainbow.

TABLE XV, Figures 6, 9, 10. Figure 6 is similar to Figure 5 and is called The Secret of Nature. An interesting diagram is shown on either side of the central figure, each consisting of a triangle with circles radiating from its points. The diagram on the left is called The Secrets of the Upper World, and the one on right The Secrets of the Underworld.

Figure 9 is the solar system. Around the central part are the words The Place of the Damned. Figure 10 shows the dot, or point of rest, surrounded by a triangle enclosing a circle containing the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. It represents completion of the process of regeneration and the consummation of the Great Work.

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Table XII, Figures 12-19

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Table XIII, Figures 1-4

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Table XIV, Figures 5, 7, and 8

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Table XV, Figures 6, 9, and 10
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 1:09 am

Alchemy and Its Exponents

IS the transmutation of base metals into gold possible? Is the idea one at which the learned of the modern world can afford to scoff? Alchemy was more than a speculative art: it was also an operative art. Since the time of the immortal Hermes, alchemists have asserted (and not without substantiating evidence) that they could manufacture gold from tin, silver, lead, and mercury. That the galaxy of brilliant philosophic and scientific minds who, over a period of two thousand years, affirmed the actuality of metallic transmutation and multiplication, could be completely sane and rational on all other problems of philosophy and science, yet hopelessly mistaken on this one point, is untenable. Nor is it reasonable that the hundreds declaring to have seen and performed transmutations of metals could all have been dupes, imbeciles, or liars.

Those assuming that all alchemists were of unsound mentality would be forced to put in this category nearly all the philosophers and scientists of the ancient and mediæval worlds. Emperors, princes, priests, and common townsfolk have witnessed the apparent miracle of metallic metamorphosis. In the face of existing testimony, anyone is privileged to remain unconvinced, but the scoffer elects to ignore evidence worthy of respectful consideration. Many great alchemists and Hermetic philosophers occupy an honored niche in the Hall of Fame, while their multitudinous critics remain obscure. To list all these sincere seekers after Nature's great arcanum is impossible, but a few will suffice to acquaint the reader with the superior types of intellect who interested themselves in this abstruse subject.

Among the more prominent names are those of Thomas Norton, Isaac of Holland, Basil Valentine (the supposed discoverer of antimony), Jean de Meung, Roger Bacon, Albertus Magnus, Quercetanus Gerber (the Arabian who brought the knowledge of alchemy to Europe through his writings), Paracelsus, Nicholas Flarnmel, John Frederick Helvetius, Raymond Lully, Alexander Sethon, Michael Sendivogius, Count Bernard of Treviso, Sir George Ripley, Picus de Mirandola, John Dee, Henry Khunrath, Michael Maier, Thomas Vaughan, J. B. von Helmont, John Heydon, Lascaris, Thomas Charnock, Synesius (Bishop of Ptolemais), Morieu, the Comte di Cagliostro, and the Comte de St.-Germain. There are legends to the effect that King Solomon and Pythagoras were alchemists and that the former manufactured by alchemical means the gold used in his temple.

Albert Pike takes sides with the alchemical philosophers by declaring that the gold of the Hermetists was a reality. He says: "The Hermetic science, like all the real sciences, is mathematically demonstrable. Its results, even material, are as rigorous as that of a correct equation. The Hermetic Gold is not only a true dogma, a light without Shadow, a Truth without alloy of falsehood; it is also a material gold, real, pure, the most precious that can be found in the mines of the earth." So much for the Masonic angle.

William and Mary jointly ascended the throne of England in 1689, at which time alchemists must have abounded in the kingdom, for during the first year of their reign they repealed an Act made by King Henry IV in which that sovereign declared the multiplying of metals to be a crime against the crown. In Dr. Sigismund Bacstrom's Collection of Alchemical Manuscripts is a handwritten copy of the Act passed by William and Mary, copied from Chapter 30 of Statutes at Large for the first year of their reign. The Act reads as follows: "An Act to repeal the Statute made in the 5th year of King Henry IV, late king of England, [wherein] it was enacted, among other things, in these words, or to this effect, namely: 'that none from henceforth should use to multiply Gold or Silver or use the craft of multiplication, and if any the same do they shall incur the pain of felony.' And whereas, since the making of the said statute, divers persons have by their study, industry and learning, arrived to great skill & perfection in the art of melting and refining of metals, and otherwise improving and multiplying them and their ores, which very much abound in this realm, and extracting gold and silver our of the same, but dare not to exercise their said skill within this realm, for fear of falling under the penalty of the said statute, but exercise the said art in foreign parts, to the great loss and detriment of this realm: Be it therefore enacted by the King's and Queen's most excellent Majesties, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords spiritual and temporal and Commons in this present parliament assembled, that from henceforth the aforesaid branch, article, or sentence, contained in the said act, and every word, matter and thing contained in the said branch or sentence, shall be repealed, annulled, revoked, and for ever made void, any thing in the said act to the contrary in any wise whatsoever notwithstanding. Provided always, and be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, that all the gold and silver that shall be extracted by the aforesaid art of melting or refining of metals, and otherwise improving and multiplying of them and their ores, as before set forth, be from henceforth employed for no other use or uses whatsoever but for the increase of monies; and that the place hereby appointed for the disposal thereof shall be their Majesties mint, within the Tower of London, at which place they are to receive the full and true value of their gold and silver, so procured, from time to time, according to the assay and fineness thereof, and so for any greater or less weight, and that none of that metal of gold and silver so refined and procured be permitted to be used or disposed of in any other place or places within their Majesties dominions." After this repealing measure had become effective, William and Mary encouraged the further study of alchemy.

Dr. Franz Hartmann has collected reliable evidence concerning four different: alchemists who transmuted base metals into gold not once but many times. One of these accounts concerns a monk of the Order of St. Augustine named Wenzel Seiler, who discovered a small amount of mysterious red powder in his convent. In the presence of Emperor Leopold I, King of Germany, Hungary, and Bohemia, he transmuted quantities of tin into gold. Among other things which he dipped into his mysterious essence was a large silver medal. That part of the medal which came in contact with the gold-producing substance was transmuted into the purest quality of the more precious metal. The rest remained silver. With regard to this medal, Dr. Hartmann writes:

"The most indisputable proof (if appearances can prove anything) of the possibility of transmuting base metals into gold, may be seen by everyone who visits Vienna; it being a medal preserved in the Imperial treasury chamber, and it is stated that this medal, consisting originally of silver, has been partly transformed into gold, by alchemical means, by the same Wenzel Seiler who was afterwards made a knight by the Emperor Leopold I. and given the title Wenzeslaus Ritter von Reinburg. "(In the Pronaos of the Temple of Wisdom.)

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PARACELSUS.
From The Complete Writings of Paracelsus, of Hohenheim.
In his Biographia Antiqua, Francis Barrett appends to the name of Paracelsus the following titles of distinction: "The Prince of Physicians and Philosophers by Fire; Grand Paradoxical Physician; The Trismegistus of Switzerland; First Reformer of Chymical Philosophy; Adept in Alchymy, Cabala, and Magic; Nature's Faithful Secretary; Master of the Elixir of Life and The Philosopher's Stone," and the "Great Monarch of Chymical Secrets"


Space limitations preclude a lengthy discussion of the alchemists. A brief sketch of the lives of four should serve to show the general principles on which they worked, the method by which they obtained their knowledge, and the use which they made of it. These four were Grand Masters of this secret science; and the stories of their wanderings and strivings, as recorded by their own pens and by contemporaneous disciples of the Hermetic art, are as fascinating as any romance of fiction.

PARACELSUS OF HOHENHEIM

The most famous of alchemical and Hermetic philosophers was Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim. This man, who called himself Paracelsus, declared that some day all the doctors of Europe would turn from the other schools and, following him, revere him above every other physician. The accepted date of the birth of Paracelsus is December 17, 1493. He was an only child. Both his father and mother were interested in medicine and chemistry. His father was a physician and his mother the superintendent of a hospital. While still a youth, Paracelsus became greatly interested in the writings of Isaac of Holland, and determined to reform the medical science of his day.

When twenty years old he began a series of travels which continued for about twelve years. He visited many European countries, including Russia. It is possible that he penetrated into Asia. It was in Constantinople that the great secret of the Hermetic arts was bestowed upon him by Arabian adepts. His knowledge of the Nature spirits and the inhabitants of the invisible worlds he probably secured from the Brahmins of India with whom he came in contact either directly or through their disciples. He became an army physician, and his understanding and skill brought him great success.

Upon his return to Germany, he began his long-dreamed-of reformation of the medical arts and sciences. He was opposed on every hand and criticized unmercifully. His violent temper and tremendously strong personality undoubtedly precipitated many storms upon his head which might have been avoided had he been of a less caustic disposition. He flayed the apothecaries, asserting that they did not use the proper ingredients in their prescriptions and did not consider the needs of their patients, desiring only to collect exorbitant fees for their concoctions.

The remarkable cures which Paracelsus effected only made his enemies hate him more bitterly, for they could not duplicate the apparent miracles which he wrought. He not only treated the more common diseases of his day but is said to have actually cured leprosy, cholera, and cancer. His friends claimed for him that he all but raised the dead. His systems of healing were so heterodox, however, that slowly but surely his enemies overwhelmed him and again and again forced him to leave the fields of his labors and seek refuge where he was not known.

There is much controversy concerning the personality of Paracelsus. That he had an irascible disposition there is no doubt. His barred for physicians and for women amounted to a mania; for them he had nothing but abuse. As far as can be learned, there was never a love affair in his life. His peculiar appearance and immoderate system of living were always held against him by his adversaries. It is believed that his physical abnormalities may have been responsible for much of the bitterness against society which he carried with him throughout all his intolerant and tempestuous life.

His reputed intemperance brought upon him still more persecution, for it was asserted that even during the time of his professorship in the University of Basel he was seldom sober. Such an accusation is difficult to understand in view of the marvelous mental clarity for which he was noted at all times. The vast amount of writing which he accomplished (the Strassburg Edition of his collected works is in three large volumes, each containing several hundred pages) is a monumental contradiction of the tales regarding his excessive use of alcoholics.

No doubt many of the vices of which he is accused were sheer inventions by his enemies, who, not satisfied with hiring assassins to murder him, sought to besmirch his memory after they had revengefully ended his life. The manner in which Paracelsus met his death is uncertain, but: the most credible account is that he died as the indirect result of a scuffle with a number of assassins who had been hired by some of his professional enemies to make away with the one who had exposed their chicanery.

Few manuscripts are extant in the handwriting of Paracelsus, for he dictated the majority of his works to his disciples, who wrote them down. Professor John Maxson Stillman, of Stanford University, pays the following tribute to his memory: "Whatever be the final judgment as to the relative importance of Paracelsus in the upbuilding of medical science and practice, it must be recognized that he entered upon his career at Basel with the zeal and the self-assurance of one who believed himself inspired with a great truth, and destined to effect a great advance in the science and practice of medicine. By nature he was a keen and open-minded observer of whatever came under his observation, though probably also not a very critical analyst of the observed phenomena. He was evidently an unusually self-reliant and independent thinker, though the degree of originality in his thought may be a matter of legitimate differences of opinion. Certainly once having, from whatever combination of influences, made up his mind to reject the sacredness of the authority of Aristotle, Galen and Avicenna, and having found what to his mind was a satisfactory substitute for the ancient dogmas in his own modification of the neo-Platonic philosophy, he did not hesitate to burn his ships behind him.

"Having cut loose from the dominant Galenism of his time, he determined to preach and teach that the basis of the medical science of the future should be the study of nature, observation of the patient, experiment and experience, and not the infallible dogmas of authors long dead. Doubtless in the pride and self-confidence of his youthful enthusiasm he did not rightly estimate the tremendous force of conservatism against which he directed his assaults. If so, his experience in Basel surely undeceived him. From that time on he was to be a wanderer again, sometimes in great poverty, sometimes in moderate comfort, but manifestly disillusioned as to the immediate success of his campaign though never in doubt as to its ultimate success--for to his mind his new theories and practice of medicine were at one with the forces of nature, which were the expression of God's will, and eventually they must prevail."

This strange man, his nature a mass of contradictions, his stupendous genius shining like a star through the philosophic and scientific darkness of mediæval Europe, struggling against the jealousy of his colleagues as well as against the irascibility of his own nature, fought for the good of the many against the domination of the few. He was the first man to write scientific books in the language of the common people so that all could read them.

Even in death Paracelsus found no rest. Again and again his bones were dug up and reinterred in another place. The slab of marble over his grave bears the following inscription: "Here lies buried Philip Theophrastus the famous Doctor of Medicine who cured Wounds, Leprosy, Gout, Dropsy and other incurable Maladies of the Body, with wonderful Knowledge and gave his Goods to be divided and distributed to the Poor. In the Year 1541 on the 24th day of September he exchanged Life for Death. To the Living Peace, to the Sepulchred Eternal Rest."

A. M. Stoddart, in her Life of Paracelsus, gives a remarkable testimonial of the love which the masses had for the great physician. Referring to his tomb, she writes: "To this day the poor pray there. Hohenheim's memory has 'blossomed in the dust' to sainthood, for the poor have canonized him. When cholera threatened Salzburg in 1830, the people made a pilgrimage to his monument and prayed him to avert it from their homes. The dreaded scourge passed away from them and raged in Germany and the rest of Austria." It was supposed that one early teacher of Paracelsus was a mysterious alchemist who called himself Solomon Trismosin. Concerning this person nothing is known save that after some years of wandering he secured the formula of transmutation and claimed to have made vast amounts of gold. A beautifully illuminated manuscript of this author, dated 1582 and called Splendor Solis, is in the British Museum. Trismosin claimed to have lived to the age of 150 as the result of his knowledge of alchemy. One very significant statement appears in his Alchemical Wanderings, which work is supposed to narrate his search for the Philosopher's Scone: "Study what thou art, whereof thou art a part, what thou knowest of this art, this is really what thou art. All that is without thee also is within, thus wrote Trismosin."

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ALBERTUS MAGNUS.
From Jovius' Vitae Illustrium Virorum.
Albert de Groot was born about 1206 and died at the age of 74. It has been said of him that he was "magnus in magia, major in philosophia, maximus in theologia." He was a member of the Dominican order and the mentor of St. Thomas Aquinas in alchemy and philosophy. Among other positions of dignity occupied by Albertus Magnus was that of Bishop of Regensburg. He was beatified in 1622. Albertus was an Aristotelian philosopher, an astrologer, and a profound student of medicine and physics. During his youth, he was considered of deficient mentality, but his since service and devotion were rewarded by a vision in which the Virgin Mary appeared to him and bestowed upon him great philosophical and intellectual powers. Having become master of the magical sciences, Albertus began the construction of a curious automaton, which he invested with the powers of speech and thought. The Android, as it was called, was composed of metals and unknown substances chosen according to the stars and endued with spiritual qualities by magical formulæ and invocations, and the labor upon it consumed over thirty years. St. Thomas Aquinas, thinking the device to be a diabolical mechanism, destroyed it, thus frustrating the labor of a lifetime. In spite of this act, Albertus Magnus left to St. Thomas Aquinas his alchemical formulæ, including (according to legend) the secret of the Philosopher's Stone.
On one occasion Albertus Magnus invited William II, Count of Holland and King of the Romans, to a garden party in midwinter. The ground was covered with snow, but Albertus, had prepare a sumptuous banquet in the open grounds of his monastery at Cologne. The guests were amazed at the imprudence of the philosopher, but as they sat down to eat Albertus, uttered a few words, the snow disappeared, the garden was filled with flowers and singing birds, and the air was warm with the breezes of summer. As soon as the feast was over, the snow returned, much to the amazement of the assembled nobles. (For details, see The Lives of Alchemystical Philosophers.)


RAYMOND LULLY

This most famous of all the Spanish alchemists was born about the year 1235. His father was seneschal to James the First of Aragon, and young Raymond was brought up in the court surrounded by the temptations and profligacy abounding in such places. He was later appointed to the position which his father had occupied. A wealthy marriage ensured Raymond's financial position, and he lived the life of a grandee.

One of the most beautiful women at: the court of Aragon was Donna Ambrosia Eleanora Di Castello, whose virtue and beauty had brought her great renown. She was at that time married and was not particularly pleased to discover that young Lully was rapidly developing a passion for her. Wherever she went Raymond followed, and at last over a trivial incident he wrote some very amorous verses to her, which produced an effect quite different from what he had expected. He received a message inviting him to visit the lady. He responded with alacrity. She told him that it was only fair that he should behold more of the beauty concerning which he wrote such appealing poems and, drawing aside part of her garments, disclosed that one side of her body was nearly eaten away by a cancer. Raymond never recovered from the shock. It turned the entire course of his life. He renounced the frivolities of the court and became a recluse.

Sometime afterwards while doing penance for his worldly sins a vision appeared to him in which Christ told him to follow in the direction in which He should lead. Later the vision was repeated. Hesitating no longer, Raymond divided his property among his family and retired to a hut on the side of a hill, where he devoted himself to the study of Arabic, that he might go forth and convert the infidels. After six years in this retreat he set out with a Mohammedan servant, who, when he learned that Raymond was about to attack the faith of his people, buried his knife in his master's back. Raymond refused to allow his would-be assassin to be executed, but later the man strangled himself in prison.

When Raymond regained his health he became a teacher of the Arabic language to those who intended traveling in the Holy Land. It was while so engaged that he came in contact: with Arnold of Villa Nova, who taught him the principles or alchemy. As a result of this training, Raymond learned the secret of the transmutation and multiplication of metals. His life of wandering continued, and during the course of it he arrived at Tunis, where he began to debate with the Mohammedan teachers, and nearly lost his life as the result of his fanatical attacks upon their religion. He was ordered to leave the country and never to return again upon pain of death. Notwithstanding their threats he made a second visit to Tunis, but the inhabitants instead of killing him merely deported him to Italy.

An unsigned article appearing in Household Words, No. 273, a magazine conducted by Charles Dickens, throws considerable light on Lully's alchemical ability. "Whilst at Vienna he [Lully] received flattering letters from Edward the Second, King of England, and from Robert Bruce, King of Scotland, entreating him to visit them. He had also, in the course of his travels, met with John Cremer, Abbot of Westminster, with whom he formed a strong friendship; and it was more to please him than the king, that Raymond consented to go to England. [A tract by John Cremer appears in the Hermetic Museum, but there is no record in the annals of Westminster of anyone by that name.] Cremer had an intense desire to learn the last great secret of alchemy--to make the powder of transmutation--and Raymond, with all his friendship, had never disclosed it. Cremer, however, set to work very cunningly; he was not long in discovering the object that was nearest to Raymond's heart--the conversion of the infidels. He told the king wonderful stories of the gold Lully had the art to make; and he worked upon Raymond by the hope that King Edward would be easily induced to raise a crusade against the Mahommedans, if he had the means.

"Raymond had appealed so often to popes and kings that he had lost all faith in them; nevertheless, as a last hope, he accompanied his friend Cremer to England. Cremer lodged him in his abbey, treating him with distinction; and there Lully at last instructed him in the powder, the secret of which Cremer had so long desired to know. When the powder was perfected, Cremer presented him to the king, who received him as a man may be supposed to receive one who could give him boundless riches. Raymond made only one condition; that the gold he made should not be expended upon the luxuries of the court or upon a war with any Christian king; and that Edward himself should go in person with an army against the infidels. Edward promised everything and anything.

"Raymond had apartments assigned him in the Tower, and there he tells us he transmuted fifty thousand pounds weight of quicksilver, lead, and tin into pure gold, which was coined at the mint into six million of nobles, each worth about three pounds sterling at the present day. Some of the pieces said to have been coined out of this gold are still to be found in antiquarian collections. [While desperate attempts have been made to disprove these statements, the evidence is still about equally divided.] To Robert Bruce he sent a little work entitled Of the Art of Transmuting Metals. Dr. Edmund Dickenson relates that when the cloister which Raymond occupied at Westminster was removed, the workmen found some of the powder, with which they enriched themselves.

"During Lully's residence in England, he became the friend of Roger Bacon. Nothing, of course, could be further from King Edward's thoughts than to go on a crusade. Raymond's apartments in the Tower were only an honorable prison; and he soon perceived how matters were. He declared that Edward would meet with nothing but misfortune and misery for his breach of faith. He made his escape from England in 1315, and set off once more to preach to the infidels. He was now a very old man, and none of his friends could ever hope to see his face again.

"He went first to Egypt, then to Jerusalem, and thence to Tunis a third time. There he at last met with the martyrdom he had so often braved. The people fell upon him and stoned him. Some Genoese merchants carried away his body, in which they discerned some feeble signs of life. They carried him on board their vessel; but, though he lingered awhile, he died as they came in sight of Majorca, on the 28th of June, 1315, at the age of eighty-one. He was buried with great honour in his family chapel at St. Ulma, the viceroy and all the principal nobility attending."

NICHOLAS FLAMMEL

In the latter part of the fourteenth century there lived in Paris one whose business was that of illuminating manuscripts and preparing deeds and documents. To Nicholas Flammel the world is indebted for its knowledge of a most remarkable volume, which he bought for a paltry sum from some bookdealer with whom his profession of scrivener brought him in contact. The story of this curious document, called the Book of Abraham the Jew, is best narrated in his own words as preserved in his Hieroglyphical Figures: "Whilst therefore, I Nicholas Flammel, Notary, after the decease of my parents, got my living at our art of writing, by making inventories, dressing accounts, and summing up the expenses of tutors and pupils, there fell into my hands for the sum of two florins, a guilded book, very old and large. It was not of paper, nor of parchment, as other books be, but was only made of delicate rinds (as it seemed to me) of tender young trees. The cover of it was of brass, well bound, all engraven with letters, or strange figures; and for my part I think they might well be Greek characters, or some such like ancient language. Sure I am. I could not read them, and I know well they were not notes nor letters of the Latin nor of the Gaul, for of them we understand a little.

Image
TITLE PAGE OF ALCHEMICAL TRACT ATTRIBUTED TO JOHN CREMER.
From Musæum Hermeticum Reformatum et Amplificatum.
John Cremer, the mythical Abbot of Westminster, is an interesting personality in the alchemical imbroglio of the fourteenth century. As it is not reasonably certain that m abbot by such a name ever occupied the See of Westminster, the question naturally arises, "Who was the person concealing his identity under the Pseudonym of John Cremer?" Fictitious characters such as John Cremer illustrate two important practices of mediæval alchemists: (1) many persons of high political or religious rank were secretly engaged in Hermetic chemical research but, fearing persecution and ridicule, published their findings under various pseudonyms; (2) for thousands of years it was the practice of those initiates who possessed the true key to the great Hermetic arcanum to perpetuate their wisdom by creating imaginary persons, involving them in episodes of contemporaneous history and thus establishing these beings as prominent members of society--in some cases even fabricating complete genealogies to attain that end. The names by which these fictitious characters were known revealed nothing to the uniformed. To the initiated, however, they signified that the personality to which they were assigned had no existence other than a symbolic one. These initiated chroniclers carefully concealed their arcanum in the lives, thoughts, words. and acts ascribed to these imaginary persons and thus safely transmitted through the ages the deepest secrets of occultism as writings which to the unconversant were nothing more than biographies.


"As for that which was within it, the leaves of bark or rind, were engraven and with admirable diligence written, with a point of iron, in fair and neat Latin letters colored. It contained thrice seven leaves, for so were they counted in the top of the leaves, and always every seventh leaf there was painted a virgin and serpent swallowing her up. In the second seventh, a cross where a serpent was crucified; and the last seventh, there were painted deserts, or wildernesse, in the midst whereof ran many fair fountains, from whence there issued out a number of serpents, which ran up and down here and there. Upon the first of the leaves, was written in great capital letters of gold, Abraham the Jew, Prince, Priest, Levite, Astrologer, and Philosopher, to the Nation of the Jews, by the Wrath of God dispersed among the Gauls, sendeth Health. After this it was filled with great execrations and curses (with this word Maranatha, which was often repeated there) against every person that should cast his eyes upon it, if he were not Sacrificer or Scribe.

"He that sold me this book knew not what it was worth nor more than I when I bought it; I believe it had been stolen or taken from the miserable Jews, or found in some part of the ancient place of their abode. Within the book, in the second leaf, he comforted his nation, counselling them to fly vices, and above all idolatry, attending with sweet patience the coming of the Messias, Who should vanquish all the kings of the earth and should reign with His people in glory eternally. Without doubt this had been some very wise and understanding man.

"In the third leaf, and in all the other writings that followed, to help his captive nation to pay their tributes unto the Roman emperors, and to do other things, which I will not speak of, he taught them in common words the transmutation of metals; he painted the vessels by the sides, and he advertised them of the colors, and of all the rest, saving of the first agent, of the which he spake not a word, but only (as he said) in the fourth and fifth leaves entire he painted it, and figured it with very great cunning and workman ship: for although it was well and intelligibly figured and painted, yet no man could ever have been able to understand it, without being well skilled in their Cabala, which goeth by tradition, and without having well studied their books.

"The fourth and fifth leaves therefore, were without any writing, all full of fair figures enlightened, or as it were enlightened, for the work was very exquisite. First he painted a young man with wings at his ancles, having in his hand a Caducean rod, writhen about with two serpents, wherewith he struck upon a helmet which covered his head. He seemed to my small judgment, to be the God Mercury of the pagans: against him there came running and flying with open wings, a great old man, who upon his head had an hour glass fastened, and in his hand a book (or syrhe) like death, with the which, in terrible and furious manner, he would have cut off the feet of Mercury. On the other side of the fourth leaf, he painted a fair flower on the top of a very high mountain which was sore shaken with the North wind; it had the foot blue, the flowers white and red, the leaves shining like fine gold: and round about it the dragons and griffons of the North made their nests and abode.

"On the fifth leaf there was a fair rose tree flowered in the midst of a sweet garden, climbing up against a hollow oak; at the foot whereof boiled a fountain of most white water, which ran headlong down into the depths, notwithstanding it first passed among the hands of infinite people, who digged in the earth seeking for it; but because they were blind, none of them knew it, except here and there one who considered the weight. On the last side of the fifth leaf there was a king with a great fauchion, who made to be killed in his presence by some soldiers a great multitude of little infants, whose mothers wept at the feet of the unpitiful soldiers: the blood of which infants was afterwards by other soldiers gathered up, and put in a great vessel, wherein the sun and the moon came to bathe themselves.

"And because that this history did represent the more part of that of the innocents slain by Herod, and that in this book I learned the greatest part of the art, this was one of the causes why I placed in their church-yard these Hieroglyphic Symbols of this secret science. And thus you see that which was in the first five leaves.

"I will not represent unto you that which was written in good and intelligible Latin in all the other written leaves, for God would punish me, because I should commit a greater wickedness, than he who (as it is said) wished that all the men of the World had but one head that he might cut it off with one blow. Having with me therefore this fair book, I did nothing else day nor night, but study upon it, understanding very well all the operations that it showed, but not knowing with what matter I should begin, which made me very heavy and solitary, and caused me to fetch many a sigh. My wife Perrenella, whom I loved as myself, and had lately married was much astonished at this, comforting me, and earnestly demanding, if she could by any means deliver me from this trouble. I could not possibly hold my tongue, but told her all, and showed this fair book, whereof at the same instant that she saw it, she became as much enamoured as myself, taking extreme pleasure to behold the fair cover, gravings, images, and portraits, whereof notwithstanding she understood as little as I: yet it was a great comfort to me to talk with her, and to entertain myself, what we should do to have the interpretation of them."

Nicholas Flammel spent many years studying the mysterious book. He even painted the pictures from it all over the walls of his house and made numerous copies which he showed to the learned men with whom he came in contact, but none could explain their secret significance. At last he determined to go forth in quest of an adept, or wise man, and after many wanderings he met a physician--by name Master Canches--who was immediately interested in the diagrams and asked to see the original book. They started forth together for Paris, and or, the way the physician adept explained many of the principles of the hieroglyphics to Flammel, but before they reached their journey's end Master Canches was taken ill and died. Flammel buried him at Orleans, but having meditated deeply on the information he had secured during their brief acquaintance, he was able, with the assistance of his wife, to work out the formula for transmuting base metals into gold. He performed the experiment several times with perfect success, and before his death caused a number of hieroglyphic figures to be painted upon an arch of St. Innocent's churchyard in Paris, wherein he concealed the entire formula as it had been revealed to him from the Book of Abraham the Jew.

COUNT BERNARD OF TREVISO

Of all those who sought for the Elixir of Life and the Philosopher's Scone, few passed through the chain of disappointments that beset Count Bernard of Treviso, who was born in Padua in 1406 and died in 1490. His search for the Philosopher's Stone and the secret of the transmutation of metals began when he was but fourteen years of age. He spent not only a lifetime but also a fortune in his quest. Count Bernard went from one alchemist and philosopher to another, each of whom unfolded some pet theorem which he eagerly accepted and experimented with but always without the desired result. His family believed him to be mad and declared that he was disgracing his house by his experiments, which were rapidly reducing him to a state of penury. He traveled in many countries, hoping that in distant places he would find wise men capable of assisting him. At last as he was approaching his seventy-sixth year, he was rewarded with success. The great secrets of the Elixir of Life, the Philosopher's Stone, and the transmutation of metals were revealed to him. He wrote a little book describing the results of his labors, and while he lived only a few years to enjoy the fruitage of his discovery he was thoroughly satisfied that the treasure he had found was worth the lifetime spent in search of it. An example of the industry and perseverance displayed by him is to be found in one of the processes which some foolish pretender coaxed him to attempt and which resulted in his spending twenty years calcining egg shells and nearly an equal period distilling alcohol and other substances. In the history of alchemical research there never was a more patient and persevering disciple of the Great Arcanum.

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THE SYMBOLS OF ABRAHAM THE JEW.
From Flammel's Hieroglyphical Figures.
Robert H. Fryar, in a footnote to his reprint of the Hieroglyphical Figures by Nicholas Flammel, says: "One thing which seems to prove the reality of this story beyond dispute, is, that this very book of Abraham the Jew, with the annotations of 'Flammel,' who wrote from the instructions he received from this physician, was actually in the hands of Cardinal Richelieu, as Borel was told by the Count de Cabrines, who saw and examined it."


Bernard declared the process of dissolution, accomplished not with fire but with mercury, to be the supreme secret of alchemy.
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

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The Theory and Practice of Alchemy: Part One

ALCHEMY, the secret art of the land of Khem, is one of the two oldest sciences known to the world. The other is astrology. The beginnings of both extend back into the obscurity of prehistoric times. According to the earliest records extant, alchemy and astrology were considered as divinely revealed to man so that by their aid he might regain his lost estate. According to old legends preserved by the Rabbins, the angel at the gate of Eden instructed Adam in the mysteries of Qabbalah and of alchemy, promising that when the human race had thoroughly mastered the secret wisdom concealed within these inspired arts, the curse of the forbidden fruit would be removed and man might again enter into the Garden of the Lord. As man took upon himself "coats of skins" (physical bodies) at the time of his fall, so these sacred sciences were brought by him into the lower worlds incarnated in dense vehicles, through which their spiritual transcendental natures could no longer manifest themselves. Therefore they were considered as being dead or lost.

The earthly body of alchemy is chemistry, for chemists do not realize that half of The Book of Torah is forever concealed behind the veil of Isis (see the Tarot), and that so long as they study only material elements they can at best discover but half of the mystery. Astrology has crystallized into astronomy, whose votaries ridicule the dreams of ancient seers and sages, deriding their symbols as meaningless products of superstition. Nevertheless, the intelligentsia of the modern world can never pass behind the veil which divides the seen from the unseen except in the way appointed--the Mysteries.

What is life? What is intelligence? What is force? These are the problems to the solution of which the ancients consecrated their temples of learning. Who shall say that they did not answer those questions? Who would recognize the answers if given? Is it possible that under the symbols of alchemy and astrology lies concealed a wisdom so abstruse that the mind of this race is not qualified to conceive its principles?

The Chaldeans, Phœnicians, and Babylonians were familiar with the principles of alchemy, as were many early Oriental races. It was practiced in Greece and Rome; was the master science of the Egyptians. Khem was an ancient name for the land of Egypt; and both the words alchemy and chemistry are a perpetual reminder of the priority of Egypt's scientific knowledge. According to the fragmentary writings of those early peoples, alchemy was to them no speculative art. They implicitly believed in the multiplication of metals; and in the face of their reiterations both the scholar and the materialist should be more kindly in their consideration of alchemical theorems. Evolutionists trace the unfoldment of the arts and sciences up through the growing intelligence of the prehistoric man, while others, of a transcendental point of view, like to consider them as being direct revelations from God.

Many interesting solutions to the riddle of alchemy's origin have been advanced. One is that alchemy was revealed to man by the mysterious Egyptian demigod Hermes Trismegistus. This sublime figure, looming through the mists of time and bearing in his hand the immortal Emerald, is credited by the Egyptians as being the author of all the arts and sciences. In honor of him all scientific knowledge was gathered under the general title of The Hermetic Arts. When the body of Hermes was interred in the Valley of Ebron (or Hebron), the divine Emerald was buried with it. Many centuries afterward the Emerald was discovered--according to one version, by an Arabian initiate; according to another, by Alexander the Great, King of Macedon. By means of the power of this Emerald, upon which were the mysterious inscriptions of the Thrice Great Hermes--thirteen sentences in all--Alexander conquered all the then known world. Not having conquered himself, however, he ultimately failed. Regardless of his glory and power, the prophecies of the talking trees were fulfilled, and Alexander was cut down in the midst of his triumph. (There are persistent rumors to the effect that Alexander was an initiate of high order who failed because of his inability to withstand the temptations of power.)

E. Y. Kenealy, quoting from the Cosmodromium of Doctor Gobelin Persona, describes the incident of Alexander and the talking trees, into the presence of which the King of Macedon is said to have been brought while on his campaign in India: "And now Alexander marched into other quarters equally dangerous; at one time over the tops of mountains, at another through dark valleys, in which his army was attacked by serpents and wild beasts, until after three hundred days he came into a most pleasant mountain, on whose sides hung chains or ropes of gold. This mountain had two thousand and fifty steps all of purest sapphire, by which one could ascend to the summit, and near this Alexander encamped. And on a day, Alexander with his Twelve Princes, ascended by the aforenamed steps to the top of the Mountain, and found there a Palace marvellously beautiful, having Twelve Gates, and seventy windows of the purest gold, and it was called the Palace of the Sun, and there was in it a Temple all of gold, before whose gates were vine trees bearing bunches of carbuncles and pearls, and Alexander and his Princes having entered the Palace, found there a Man lying on a golden bedstead; he was very stately and beautiful in appearance, and his head and beard were white as snow. Then Alexander and his princes bent the knee to the Sage who spake thus: 'Alexander, thou shalt now see what no earthly man hath ever before seen or heard.' To whom Alexander made answer: 'O, Sage, most happy, how dost thou know me?' He replied: 'Before the wave of the Deluge covered the face of the earth I knew thy works.' He added: 'Wouldst thou behold the most hallowed Trees of the Sun and Moon, which announce all future things?' Alexander made answer: 'It is well, my lord; greatly do we long to see them.' * * *

"Then the Sage said: 'Put away your rings and ornaments, and take off your shoes, and follow me.' And Alexander did so, and choosing out three from the Princes, and leaving the rest to await his return, he followed the Sage, and came to the Trees of the Sun and Moon. The Tree of the Sun has leaves of red gold, the Tree of the Moon has leaves of silver, and they are very great, and Alexander, at the suggestion of the Sage questioned the Trees, asking if he should return in triumph to Macedon? to which the Trees gave answer, No, but that he should live yet another year and eight months, after which he should die by a poisoned cup. And when he inquired, Who was he who should give him that poison? he received no reply, and the Tree of the Moon said to him, that his Mother, after a most shameful and unhappy death, should lie long unburied, but that happiness was in store for his sisters." (See The Book of Enoch, The Second Messenger of God.)

In all probability, the so-called talking trees were merely strips of wood with tables of letters upon them, by means of which oracles were evoked. At one time books written upon wood were called "talking trees." The difficulty in deciding the origin of alchemy is directly due to ignoring the lost continent of Atlantis. The Great Arcanum was the most prized of the secrets of the Atlantean priestcraft. When the land of Atlas sank, hierophants of the Fire Mystery brought the formula to Egypt, where it remained for centuries in the possession of the sages and philosophers. It gradually moved into Europe, where its secrets are still preserved intact.

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THE LEAVES OF HERMES' SACRED TREE.
Redrawn from an original manuscript dated 1577.
In his Key to Alchemy, Samuel Norton divides into fourteen parts the processes or states through which the alchemical substances pass from the time they are first placed in the test tube until ready as medicine for plants, minerals, or men:
1. Solution, the act of passing from a gaseous or solid condition, into one of liquidity.
2. Filtration, the mechanical separation of a liquid from the undissolved particles suspended in it.
3. Evaporation, the changing or converting from a liquid or solid state into a vaporous state with the aid of heat.
4. Distillation, an operation by which a volatile liquid may be separated from substances which it holds in solution.
5. Separation, the operation of disuniting or decomposing substances.
6. Rectification, the process of refining or purifying any substance by repeated distillation.
7. Calcination, the conversion into a powder or calx by the action of heat; expulsion of the volatile substance from a matter.
8. Commixtion, the blending of different ingredients into new compounds or mass.
9. Purification (through putrefaction), disintegration by spontaneous decomposition; decay by artificial means.
10. Inhibition, the process of holding back or restraining.
11. Fermentation, the conversion of organic substances into new compounds in the presence of a ferment.
12. Fixation, the act or process of ceasing to be a fluid and becoming firm; state of being fixed.
13. Multiplication, the act or process of multiplying or increasing in number, the state of being multiplied.
14. Projection, the process of turning the base Metals into gold.


Those disagreeing with the legend of Hermes and his Emerald Tablet see in the two hundred angels who descended upon the mountains, as described by the Prophet: Enoch, the first instructors in the alchemical art. Regardless of its originator, it was left to the Egyptian priests to preserve alchemy for the modern world. Egypt, because of the color of its earth, was called "the black empire" and is referred to in the Old Testament as "the land of darkness." By reason of its possible origin there, alchemy has long been known as "the black art, " not in the sense of evil but in the sense of that darkness which has always enshrouded its secret processes.

During the Middle Ages, alchemy was not only a philosophy and a science but also a religion. Those who rebelled against the religious limitations of their day concealed their philosophic teachings under the allegory of gold-making. In this way they preserved their personal liberty and were ridiculed rather than persecuted. Alchemy is a threefold art, its mystery well symbolized by a triangle. Its symbol is 3 times 3--three elements or processes in three worlds or spheres. The 3 times 3 is part of the mystery of the 33rd degree of Freemasonry, for 33 is 3 times 3, which is 9, the number of esoteric man and the number of emanations from the root of the Divine Tree. It is the number of worlds nourished by the four rivers that pour out of the Divine Mouth as the verbum fiat. Beneath the so-called symbolism of alchemy is concealed a magnificent concept, for this ridiculed and despised craft still preserves intact the triple key to the gates of eternal life. Realizing, therefore, that alchemy is a mystery in three worlds--the divine, the human, and the elemental--it can easily be appreciated why the sages and philosophers created and evolved an intricate allegory to conceal their wisdom.

Alchemy is the science of multiplication and is based upon the natural phenomenon of growth. "Nothing from nothing comes," is an extremely ancient adage. Alchemy is not the process of making something from nothing; it is the process of increasing and improving that which already exists. If a philosopher were to state that a living man could be made from a stone, the unenlightened would probably exclaim, "Impossible!" Thus would they reveal their ignorance, for to the wise it is known that in every stone is the seed of man. A philosopher might declare that a universe could be made out of a man, but the foolish would regard this as an impossibility, not realizing that a man is a seed from which a universe may be brought forth.

God is the "within" and the "without" of all things. The Supreme One manifests Himself through growth, which is an urge from within outward, a struggle for expression and manifestation. There is no greater miracle in the growing and multiplication of gold by the alchemist than in a tiny mustard seed producing a bush many thousands of times the size of the seed. If a mustard seed produces a hundred thousand times its own size and weight when planted in an entirely different substance (the earth), why should not the seed of gold be multiplied a hundred thousand times by art when that seed is planted in its earth (the base metals) and nourished artificially by the secret process of alchemy?

Alchemy teaches that God is in everything; that He is One Universal Spirit, manifesting through an infinity of forms. God, therefore, is the spiritual seed planted in the dark earth (the material universe). By arc it is possible so to grow and expand this seed that the entire universe of substance is tinctured thereby and becomes like unto the seed--pure gold. In the spiritual nature of man this is termed regeneration; in the material body of the elements it is called transmutation. As it is in the spiritual and material universes, so it is in the intellectual world. Wisdom cannot be imparted to an idiot because the seed of wisdom is not within him, but wisdom may be imparted to an ignorant person, however ignorant he may be, because the seed of wisdom exists in him and can be developed by art and culture. Hence a philosopher is only an ignorant man within whose nature a projection has taken place.

Through art (the process of learning) the whole mass of base metals (the mental body of ignorance) was transmuted into pure gold (wisdom), for it was tinctured with understanding. If, then, through faith and proximity to God the consciousness of man may be transmuted from base animal desires (represented by the masses of the planetary metals) into a pure, golden, and godly consciousness, illumined and redeemed, and the manifesting God within that one increased from a tiny spark to a great and glorious Being; if also the base metals of mental ignorance can, through proper endeavor and training, be transmuted into transcendent genius and wisdom, why is the process in two worlds or spheres of application not equally true in the third? If both the spiritual and mental elements of the universe can be multiplied in their expression, then by the law of analogy the material elements of the universe can also be multiplied, if the necessary process can be ascertained.

That which is true in the superior is true in the inferior. If alchemy be a great spiritual fact, then it is also a great material fact. If it can take place in the universe, it can take place in man; if it can take place in man, it can take place in the plants and minerals. If one thing in the universe grows, then everything in the universe grows. If one thing can be multiplied, then all things can be multiplied, "for the superior agrees with the inferior and the inferior agrees with the superior." But as the way for the redemption of the soul is concealed by the Mysteries, so the secrets for the redemption of the metals are also concealed, that they may not fall into the hands of the profane and thereby become perverted.

If any would grow metals, he must first learn the secrets of the metals: he must realize that all metals--like all stones, plants, animals, and universes--grow from seeds, and that these seeds are already in the body of Substance (the womb of the World Virgin); for the seed of man is in the universe before he is born (or grows), and as the seed of the plant exists for all time though the plant live but a part of that time, so the seeds of spiritual gold and material gold are ever present in all things. The metals grow throughout the ages, because life is imparted to them from the sun. They grow imperceptibly, in form like tiny shrubs, for everything grows in some way. Only the methods of growth differ, according to kind and magnitude.

One of the great axioms is, "Within everything is the seed of everything," although by the simple processes of Nature it may remain latent for many centuries, or its growth may be exceedingly slow. Therefore, every grain of sand contains not only the seed of the precious metals as well as the seed of the priceless gems, but also the seeds of sun, moon, and stars. As within the nature of man is reflected the entire universe in miniature, so in each grain of sand, each drop of water, each tiny particle of cosmic dust, are concealed all the parts and elements of cosmos in the form of tiny seed germs so minute that even the most powerful microscope cannot detect them. Trillions of times smaller than the ion or electron, these seeds--unrecognizable and incomprehensible--await the time assigned them for growth and expression. (Consider the monads of Leibnitz.)

There are two methods whereby growth may be accomplished. The first is by Nature, for Nature is an alchemist forever achieving the apparently impossible. The second is by art, and through art is produced in a comparatively short time that which requires Nature almost endless periods to duplicate. The true philosopher, desiring to accomplish the Magnum Opus, patterns his conduct according to the laws of Nature, recognizing that the art of alchemy is merely a method copied from Nature but with the aid of certain secret formulæ greatly shortened by being correspondingly intensified. Nature, in order to achieve her miracles, must work through either extensiveness; or intensiveness. The extensive processes of Nature are such as are used in the transmutation of the pitch of black carbon into diamonds, requiring millions of years of natural hardening. The intensive process is art, which is ever the faithful servant of Nature (as Dr. A. Dee says), supplementing her every step and cooperating with her in all her ways. "So, in this philosophical work, Nature and Art ought so lovingly to embrace each other, as that Art may not require what Nature denies, nor Nature deny what may be perfected by Art. For Nature assenting, she demeans herself obediently to every artist, whilst by their industry she is helped, not hindered. " (Dr. A. Dee in his Chemical Collections.)

By means of this art the seed which is within the soul of a stone may be made to germinate so intensively that in a few moments a diamond is grown from the seed of itself. If the seed of the diamond were not in the marble, granite, and sand, a diamond could not be grown therefrom. But as the seed is within all these things, a diamond may be grown out of any other substance in the universe. In some substances, however, it is easier to perform this miracle because in them these germs have already been long fertilized and are thus more nearly prepared for the vivifying process of the art. Likewise, to teach some men wisdom is easier than to teach others, for some already have a foundation upon which to work, while in others the thinking faculties are entirely dormant. Alchemy, therefore, should be regarded as the art of increasing and bringing into perfect flower with the greatest possible expedition. Nature may accomplish her desired end or, because of the destructiveness exercised by one element over another, she may not; but with the aid of the true art, Nature always accomplishes her end, for this art is not subject either to the wastings of time or to the vandalism of elemental reactions.

In his History of Chemistry, James Campbell Brown, late professor of chemistry in the University of Liverpool, sums up the ends which alchemists sought to achieve, in the following paragraphs:

"This, therefore, was the general aim of the alchemists--to carry out in the laboratory, as far as possible, the processes which Nature carried out in the interior of the earth. Seven leading problems occupied their attention:--

"1. The preparation of a compound named elixir, magisterium medicine, or philosopher's stone, which possessed the property of transmuting the baser metals into gold and silver, and of performing many other marvelous operations. * * *

"2. The creation of homunculi, or living. beings, of which many wonderful but incredible tales are told.

"3. The preparation of the alcahest or universal solvent, which dissolved every substance which was immersed in it. * * *

"4. Palingenesis, or the restoration of a plant from its ashes. Had they succeeded in this, they would have hoped to be able to raise the dead. [Professor Brown takes a great deal for granted.]

"5. The preparation of spiritus mundi, a mystic substance possessing many powers, the principal of which was its capacity of dissolving gold.

"6. The extraction of the quintessence or active principle of all substances.

"7. The preparation of aurum potabile, liquid gold, a sovereign remedy, because gold being itself perfect could produce perfection in the human frame."

ALCHEMICAL SYMBOLISM

In alchemy there are three symbolic substances: mercury, sulphur, and salt. To these was added a fourth mysterious life principle called Azoth. Concerning the first three, Herr von Welling has written: "There are three basic chemical substances which are called by the philosophers salt, sulphur, and mercury, but which are not to be confounded in any way with the crude salt, sulphur, and mercury taken from the earth or secured from the apothecary. Salt, sulphur, and mercury each has a triune nature, for each of these substances contains, in reality, also the other two substances, according to the secret arcanum of the wise. The body of salt is, therefore, threefold, namely salt, sulphur, and mercury; but in the body of salt one of the three (salt) predominates. Mercury is likewise composed of salt, sulphur, and mercury with the latter element predominating. Sulphur, similarly, is actually salt, sulphur, and mercury, with sulphur predominating. These nine divisions--3 times 3, plus Azoth (the mysterious universal life force), equals 10, the sacred decad of Pythagoras. Concerning the nature of Azoth there is much controversy. Some view it as the invisible, eternal fire; others as electricity; still others as magnetism. Transcendentalism refer to it as the astral light.

"The universe is surrounded by the sphere of the stars. Beyond that sphere is the sphere of Schamayim, which is the Divine fiery water, the first outflow of the Word of God, the flaming river pouring from the presence of the Eternal. Schamayim, the fiery androgynous water, divides. The fire becomes the solar fire and the water becomes the lunar water. Schamayim is the universal mercury--sometimes called Azoth--the measureless spirit of life. The spiritual fiery original water--Schamayim--comes through Eden (in Hebrew, vapor) and pours itself into four main rivers [the elements]. This is the river of living water--Azoth [the fiery mercurial essence] that flows out from the throne of God and the Lamb. In this Eden [vaporous essence or mist] is the spiritual earth [incomprehensible and intangible], or the dust Aphar, out of which God formed Adam min Haadamah, the spiritual body of man, which body must sometime become revealed."

In another part of his writings von Welling also says that there was no material universe until Lucifer, attempting to perform the cosmic alchemy, misused the Schamayim, or the Divine Fire. In order to reestablish the Schamayim which Lucifer had perverted, this universe was formed as a means of liberating it from the dark cloud within which it was locked by the failure of Lucifer's attempt to control it. These statements clearly emphasize the fact that the early philosophers recognized in the Bible a book of chemical and alchemical formulæ. It is essential that this point be kept in mind at all times. Woe to that seeker who accepts as literal the rambling allegories of the alchemists. Such a one can never enter the inner sanctuary of truth. Elias Ashmole in his Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum thus describes the methods employed by the alchemists to conceal their true doctrines: "Their chiefest study was to wrap up their Secrets in Fables, and spin out their Fancies in Vailes and shadows, whose Radii seems to extend every way, yet so, that they meet in a Common Center, and point onely at One thing."

The fact that the Scriptures reveal a hidden knowledge, if considered allegorically, is clearly demonstrated by a parable describing King Solomon, his wives, concubines, and virgins, which parable occurs in Geheime Figuren der Rosenkreuzer, published in Ultona in 1785. Dr. Hartmann, who translated part of this work into English, declared that the wives of Solomon represented the arts, the concubines the sciences, and the virgins the still unrevealed secrets of Nature. By order of the King the virgins were forced to remove their veils, thus signifying that by means of wisdom (Solomon) the mystic arts were forced to disclose their hidden parts to the philosopher, while to the uninitiated world only the outside garments were visible. (Such is the mystery of the veil of Isis.)

As the alchemist must do his work in four worlds simultaneously if he would achieve the Magnum Opus, a table showing the analogies of the three principles in the four worlds may clarify the relationship which the various parts bear to each other. The early masters of the art of alchemical symbolism did not standardize either their symbols or their terms. Thus it required great familiarity with the subject combined with considerable intuitive power to unravel some of their enigmatical statements. The third and fourth divisions of the following table are given alternative renderings, owing to the fact that some authors did not draw a clear line between spirit and soul. According to the Scriptures, spirit is indestructible, but soul is destructible. Obviously, then, they are not synonymous. It is clearly stated that "the soul that sinneth, it shall die," but "the spirit shall return unto God who gave it." The table of analogies, as nearly as they can be established, is as follows:

The Triune Power in Four Worlds

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The alternative renderings of 3 and 4 are:

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Paracelsus made a different arrangement, somewhat Aristotelian, in which the three phases of the Triune God are omitted, combining only the elements of the second, third, and fourth worlds:

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The main point, however, is proved: the alchemical philosophers used the symbols of salt, sulphur, and mercury to represent not only chemicals but the spiritual and invisible principles of God, man, and the universe. The three substances (salt, sulphur, and mercury) existing in four worlds, as shown in the table, sum up to the sacred number 12. As these 12 are the foundations of the Great Work, they are called in Revelation the twelve foundation stones of the sacred city. In line with the same idea Pythagoras asserted that the dodecahedron, or twelve-faced symmetrical geometric solid, was the foundation of the universe. May there not be a relation also between this mysterious 3 times 4 and the four parties of three which in the legend of the third degree of Freemasonry go forth to the four angles of the cherubim, the composite creature of four parts?

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A TABLE OF MEDIÆVAL ALCHEMICAL SYMBOLS.
From Valentine's The Last Will and Testament.
Hermetists used the curious symbols shown in this rare table to represent various chemical elements and alchemical processes. The full meaning of these strange characters has never been revealed, the characters concealing effectually within their own forms the occult secrets regarding the spiritual nature of the metals and elements which they represent.
In their allegories the alchemists also wed human, animal, and plant emblems; sometimes weird composite figures, such as the dragon, the winged serpent, the unicorn, and the phœnix. In almost every case they symbolized gold as a king with a crown on his head and often with a scepter in his hand. Sometimes they depicted him with the ace of the solar disc surrounded by rays. Silver was personified as a woman who they called the queen. She wore no crown but often stood upon a lunar crescent: much after the fashion of the Madonna. Mercury was typified as a youth with wings, often with two heads, carrying serpents or sometimes the caduceus. Lead they symbolized by an old man with a scythe in his hand; iron by a soldier dressed in armor. To aqua fortis was given the curious name "the ostrich's stomach," and to the attainment of the "Great Work" they assigned the symbol of the phœnix sitting upon a nest of fire. The union of elements they symbolized by a marriage, the Process of putrefaction by a skull, antimony by a dragon.


The following table shows the angles to which the parties of three (salt, sulphur, and mercury) go in search of CHiram:

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One more table should prove of interest to Masonic scholars: one showing the relationship existing between the three substances, salt, sulphur, and mercury, and certain symbols with which Masons are familiar. This table also has an alternative rendering, based on the interblending of philosophic principles, which are difficult--if not impossible--to separate into chronological order.

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The alternative rendering of No. 2 is:

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In alchemy is found again the perpetuation of the Universal Mystery; for as surely as Jesus died upon the cross, Hiram (CHiram) at the west gate of the Temple, Orpheus on the banks of the river Hebros, Christna on the banks of the Ganges, and Osiris in the coffin prepared by Typhon, so in alchemy, unless the elements first die, the Great Work cannot be achieved. The stages of the alchemical processes can be traced in the lives and activities of nearly all the world Saviors and teachers, and also among the mythologies of several nations. It is said in the Bible that "except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." In alchemy it is declared that without putrefaction the Great Work cannot be accomplished. What is it that dies on the cross, is buried in the tomb of the Mysteries, and that dies also in the retort and becomes black with putrefaction? Also, what is it that does this same thing in the nature of man, that he may rise again, phœnix-like, from his own ashes (caput mortuum)?

The solution in the alchemical retort, if digested a certain length of time, will turn into a red elixir, which is called the universal medicine. It resembles a fiery water and is luminous in the dark. During the process of digestion it passes through many colors which has given rise to its being called the peacock because of its iridescence during one of the periods of its digestion. If the augmentations of its power be carried too far, the test tube containing the substance will explode and vanish as dust. This commonly occurs and is the greatest danger involved in the preparation of the medicine for men and metals. If developed too far, it will also seep through the glass, for there is no physical container sufficiently strong to hold it, The reason for this is that it is no longer a substance but a divine essence partaking of the interpenetrative power of Divinity. When it is properly developed, this universal solvent in liquid form will dissolve into itself all other metals. In this high state the universal salt is a liquid fire. This salt dissolved with the proper amount of any metal and run through the different stages of digestion and rotations; of augmentations will eventually become a medicine for the transmuting of inferior metals.

The True Way of Nature by Hermes Trismegistus, given out by a genuine Freemason, I.C.H., describes the danger of over-augmenting the universal salt: "But this multiplication cannot be carried on ad infinitum but it attains completeness in the ninth rotation. For when this tincture has been rotated nine times it cannot be exalted any further because it will not permit any further separation. For as soon as it perceives only the smallest degree of material fire it goes instantly into a flux and passes through the glass like hot oil through paper."

In classifying the processes through which the chemical elements must pass before the Hermetic medicine is produced, lack of uniformity in terminology is evidenced, for in The True Way of Nature seven stages are given, while in the Dictionnaire Mytho-Hermétique twelve are noted. These twelve are linked with the signs of the zodiac in a manner worthy of consideration.

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This arrangement opens an interesting field of speculation which may be of great service if intelligently carried out. These twelve "steps" leading up to the accomplishment of the Magnum Opus are a reminder of the twelve degrees of the ancient Rosicrucian Mysteries. To a certain degree, Rosicrucianism was chemistry theologized and alchemy philosophized. According to the Mysteries, man was redeemed as the result of his passage in rotation through the twelve mansions of the heavens. The twelve processes by means of which the "secret essence" may be discovered remind the student forcibly of the twelve Fellow Craftsmen who are sent forth in search of the murdered Builder of the Universe, the Universal Mercury.

According to Solomon Trismosin, the stages through which matter passes in its journey towards perfection are divided into twenty-two parts, each of which is represented by an appropriate drawing. There is an important connection between the twenty-two emblems of Trismosin, the twenty-two major cards of the Tarot, and the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. These mysterious Tarot cards are themselves an alchemical formula, if properly interpreted. As if to substantiate the claims of mediæval philosophers that King Solomon was a master of alchemy, Dr. Franz Hartmann has noted that the much-abused and misunderstood Song of Solomon is in reality an alchemical formula. The student of natural philosophy will immediately recognize the "dark maid of Jerusalem," not as a person but as a material sacred to the sages. Dr. Hartmann writes: "The 'Song of Solomon,' in the Old Testament, is a description of the processes of Alchemy. In this Song the Subjectum is described in Cant. i., 5; the Lilium artis in C. ii., 1; the Preparation and Purification in C. ii., 4; the Fire in C. ii., 7, and C. iv., 16, the Putrefaction in C. iii., 1; Sublimation and Distillation in C. iii., 6, Coagulation and Change of Colors, C. v., 9 to 14; Fixation, C. ii., 12, and C. viii., 4; Multiplication, C. vi., 7; Augmentation and Projection, C. viii., 8, etc., etc."

A tiny particle of the Philosopher's Scone, if cast upon the surface of water, will, according to an appendix to the work on the universal salt by Herr von Welling, immediately begin a process of recapitulating in miniature the history of the universe, for instantly the tincture--like the Spirits of Elohim--moves upon the face of the waters. A miniature universe is formed which the philosophers have affirmed actually rises out of the water and floats in the air, where it passes through all the stages of cosmic unfoldment and finally disintegrates into dust again. Not only is it possible to prepare a medicine for metals; it is also possible to prepare a tincture for minerals by means of which pieces of granite and marble can be turned into precious stones; also stones of inferior quality may be improved.

As one of the great alchemists fittingly observed, man's quest for gold is often his undoing, for he mistakes the alchemical processes, believing them to be purely material. He does not realize that the Philosopher's Gold, the Philosopher's Stone, and the Philosopher's Medicine exist in each of the four worlds and that the consummation of the experiment cannot be realized until it is successfully carried on in four worlds simultaneously according to one formula. Furthermore, one of the constituents of the alchemical formula exists only within the nature of man himself, without which his chemicals will not combine, and though he spend his life and fortune in chemical experimentation, he will not produce the desired end. The paramount reason why the material scientist is incapable of duplicating the achievements of the mediæval alchemists--although he follow every step carefully and accurately--is that the subtle element which comes out of the nature of the illuminated and regenerated alchemical philosopher is missing in his experimentation.

On this subject Dr. Franz Hartmann in a footnote to his translation of extracts from Paracelsus clearly expresses the conclusions of a modern investigator of alchemical lore: "I wish to warn the reader, who might be inclined to try any of the alchemical prescriptions * * *, not to do so unless he is an alchemist, because, although I know from personal experience that these prescriptions are not only allegorically but literally true, and will prove successful in the hands of an alchemist, they would only cause a waste of time and money in the hands of one who has not the necessary qualifications. A person who wants to be an alchemist must have in himself the 'magnesia', which means, the magnetic power to attract and 'coagulate' invisible astral elements."

In considering the formulæ on the following pages, it must be recognized that the experiments cannot be successfully conducted unless the one who performs them be himself a Magus. If two persons, one an initiate and the other unilluminated in the supreme art, were to set to work, side by side, using the same vessels, the same substances, and exactly the same modus operandi, the initiate would produce his "gold" and the uninitiated would not. Unless the greater alchemy has first taken place within the soul of man, he cannot perform the lesser alchemy in the retort. This is an invariable rule, although it is cunningly hidden in the allegories and emblems of Hermetic philosophy. Unless a man be "born again" he cannot accomplish the Great Work, and if the student of alchemical formulæ will remember this, it will save him much sorrow and disappointment. To speak of that part of the mystery which is concerned with the secret life principle within the actual nature of man, is forbidden, for it is decreed by the Masters of the art that each shall discover that for himself and on this subject it is unlawful to speak at greater length.
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 1:15 am

The Theory and Practice of Alchemy: Part Two

All true Philosophers of the natural or Hermetic sciences begin their labors with a prayer to the Supreme Alchemist of the Universe, beseeching His assistance in the consummation of the Magnum Opus. The prayer that follows, written in a provincial German centuries ago by an adept now unknown, is representative: "O holy and hallowed Trinity, Thou undivided and triple Unity! Cause me to sink into the abyss of Thy limitless eternal Fire, for only in that Fire can the mortal nature of man be changed into humble dust, while the new body of the salt union lies in the light. Oh, melt me and transmute me in this Thy holy Fire, so that on the day at Thy command the fiery waters of the Holy Spirit draw me out from the dark dust, giving me new birth and making me alive with His breath. May I also be exalted through the humble humility of Thy Son, rising through His assistance out of the dust and ashes and changing into a pure spiritual body of rainbow colors like unto the transparent, crystal-like, paradisiacal gold, that my own nature may be redeemed and purified like the elements before me in these glasses and bottles. Diffuse me in the waters of life as though I were in the wine cellar of the eternal Solomon. Here the fire of Thy love will receive new fuel and will blaze forth so that no streams can extinguish it. Through the aid of this divine fire, may I in the end be found worthy to be called into the illumination of the righteous. May I then be sealed up with the light of the new world that I may also attain unto the immortality and glory where there shall be no more alternation of light and darkness. Amen."

THE ORIGIN OF ALCHEMICAL FORMULÆ

Apparently but few of the mediæval alchemists discovered the Great Arcanum without aid, some authors declaring that none of them attained the desired end without the assistance of a Master or Teacher. In every instance the identity of these Masters has been carefully concealed, and even during the Middle Ages speculation ran rife concerning them. It was customary to call such illuminated sages adepts, a title which indicated that they possessed the true secrets of transmutation and multiplication. These adepts were polyonymous individuals who unexpectedly appeared and disappeared again, leaving no trace of their whereabouts. There are indications that a certain degree of organization existed among them. The most powerful of the alchemical organizations were the Rosicrucians, the Illuminati, and certain Arabian and Syrian sects.

I n the documents which follow, references are made to the "Brethren "or "Brothers. " These are to signify that those who had actually accomplished the Magnum Opus were banded together and known to each other by cipher codes and secret signs or symbols. Apparently a number of these illuminated adepts dwelt in Arabia, for several of the great European alchemists were initiated in Asia Minor. When a disciple of the alchemical arts had learned the supreme secret, he guarded it jealously, revealing to no man his priceless treasure. He was not permitted to disclose it even to the members of his immediate family.

As the years passed, one who had discovered the secret--or, more properly, one to whom it had been revealed--sought for some younger man worthy to be entrusted with the formulæ. To this one, and to this one only, as a rule, the philosopher was permitted to disclose the arcanum. The younger man then became the "philosophical son" of the old sage, and to him the latter bequeathed his secrets. Occasionally, however, an adept, on finding a sincere and earnest seeker, would instruct him in the fundamental principles of the art, and if the disciple persisted, he was quietly initiated into the august fraternity of the Brethren. In such manner the alchemical processes were preserved, but the number of those who knew them did not increase rapidly.

During the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries a considerable number of alchemical adepts made their way from place to place throughout Europe, appearing and disappearing apparently at will. According to popular tradition, these adepts were immortal, and kept themselves alive by means of the mysterious medicine that was one of the goals of alchemical aspiration. It is asserted that some lived hundreds of years, taking no food except this elixir, a few drops of which would preserve their youth for a long period of time. That such mysterious men did exist there can be little doubt, as their presence is attested by scores of reliable witnesses.

It is further asserted that they are still to be found by those who have qualified themselves to contact them. The philosophers taught that like attracts like, and that when the disciple has developed a virtue and integrity acceptable to the adepts they will appear to him and reveal those parts of the secret processes which cannot be discovered without such help. "Wisdom is as a flower from which the bee its honey makes and the spider poison, each according to its own nature." (By an unknown adept.)

The reader must bear in mind at all times that the formulæ and emblems of alchemy are to be taken primarily as allegorical symbols; for until their esoteric significance has been comprehended, their literal interpretation is valueless. Nearly every alchemical formula has one element purposely omitted, it being decided by the mediæval philosophers that those who could not with their own intelligence discover that missing substance or process were not qualified to be entrusted with secrets which could give them control over great masses of humanity and likewise subject to their will the elemental forces of Nature.

THE EMERALD TABLE OF HERMES

The oldest and most revered of all the alchemical formulæ is the sacred Emerald Tablet of Hermes. Authorities do not agree as to the genuineness of this Table, some declaring it to be a post-Christian fraud, but there is much evidence that, regardless of its author, the Table is of great antiquity. While the symbol of the Emerald Table is of special Masonic import--relating as it does to the personality of CHiram (Hiram)--it is first and fundamentally an alchemical formula, relating both to the alchemy of the base metals and the divine alchemy of human regeneration.

In Dr. Sigismund Bacstrom's collection of alchemical manuscripts is a section devoted to the translations and interpretations of this remarkable Tablet, which was known to the ancients as the Tabula Smaragdina. Dr. Bacstrom was initiated into the Brotherhood of the Rose Cross on the island of Mauritius by one of those unknown adepts who at that time called himself Comte de Chazal. Dr. Bacstrom's translations and notes on the Emerald Tablet are, in part, as follows, the actual text being reproduced in capital letters:

"The Emerald Table, the Most Ancient Monument of the Chaldeans concerning the Lapis Philosophorum (the stone of the philosophers).

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THE KEY TO ALCHEMY ACCORDING TO THE EGYPTIANS.
From Kircher's Œdipus Ægyptiacus.
The priests of Egypt not only used the scarab as a symbol of regeneration but also discovered in its habits many analogies to the secret process whereby base metals could be transmuted into gold. They saw in the egg of the scarab the seed of the metals, and the above figure shows the path of this seed through the various planetary bodies until, finally reaching the center, it is perfected and then returns again to its source. The words in the mall spiral at the top read: "The spiral Progress of the mundane spirit." After the scarab has wound its way around the spiral to the center of the lower part of the figure, it returns to the upper world along the path bearing the words: "Return of the spirit to the center of unity."


"The Emerald Table furnishes the origin of the allegorical history of King Hiram (rather Chiram). The Chaldeans, Egyptians, and Hebrews in what concerns Chiram have taken their knowledge from one and the same fountain; Homerus, who relates this history in a different manner, followed that original, and Virgil followed Homerus, as Hesiodus took the subject for his Theogony likewise from thence, which Ovidius took afterwards for a pattern for his Metamorphosis. The knowledge of Nature's secret operations constitutes the principal sense of all these ancient writings, but ignorance framed out of it that external or veiled mythology and the lower class of people turned it into idolatry.

"The Genuine Translation from the Original Very Ancient Chaldee is as Follows:

"THE SECRET WORKS OF CHIRAM ONE IN ESSENCE, BUT THREE IN ASPECT.

"(The two first large words mean the Secret Work.)

"(The second line in large letters, reads: Chiram Telat Machasot, i.e. Chiram the Universal Agent, One in Essence but three in aspect.)

'IT IS TRUE, NO LIE, CERTAIN, AND TO BE DEPENDED UPON, THE SUPERIOR AGREES WITH THE INFERIOR, AND THE INFERIOR WITH THE SUPERIOR, TO EFFECT THAT ONE TRULY WONDERFUL WORK. AS ALL THINGS OWE THEIR EXISTENCE TO THE WILL OF THE ONLY ONE, SO ALL THINGS OWE THEIR ORIGIN TO THE ONE ONLY THING, THE MOST HIDDEN, BY THE ARRANGEMENT OF THE ONLY GOD. THE FATHER OF THAT ONE ONLY THING IS THE SUN, ITS MOTHER IS THE MOON, THE WIND CARRIES IT IN ITS BELLY; BUT ITS NOURSE IS A SPIRITUOUS EARTH. THAT ONE ONLY THING (after God) IS THE FATHER OF ALL THINGS IN THE UNIVERSE. ITS POWER IS PERFECT, AFTER IT HAS BEEN UNITED TO A SPIRITUOUS EARTH.

"(Process--First Distillation.) SEPARATE THAT SPIRITUOUS EARTH FROM THE DENSE OR CRUDE BY MEANS OF A GENTLE HEAT, WITH MUCH ATTENTION.

"(Last Digestion.) IN GREAT MEASURE IT ASCENDS FROM THE EARTH UP TO HEAVEN, AND DESCENDS AGAIN, NEWBORN, ON THE EARTH, AND THE SUPERIOR AND THE INFERIOR ARE INCREASED IN POWER. The Azoth ascends from the Earth, from the bottom of the Glass, and redescends in Veins and drops into the Earth and by this continual circulation the Azoth is more and more subtilized, Volatilizes Sol and carries the volatilized Solar atoms along with it and thereby becomes a Solar Azoth, i.e. our third, and genuine Sophic Mercury, and this circulation of the Solar Azoth must continue until it ceases of itself, and the Earth has sucked it all in, when it muse become the black pitchy matter, the Toad [the substances in the alchemical retort and also the lower elements in the body of man], which denotes complete putrefaction or Death of the Compound.

"BY THIS THOU WILT PARTAKE OF THE HONOURS OF THE WHOLE WORLD. Without doubt as the black, pitchy matter will and must of necessity become White and Red, and the Red having been carried to perfection, medicinally and for Metals, is then fully capable to preserve mentem sanam in corpore sano until the natural period of Life and promise us ample means, in infinitum multipliable, to be benevolent and charitable without any diminution of our inexhaustible resources, therefore well may it be called the Glory [Honours] of the Whole World, as truly the study and contemplation of the L. P. [Lapis Philosophorum], harmonising with Divine Truths, elevates the mind to God our Creator and merciful Father, and if He should permit us to possess it practically must eradicate the very principle of Avarice, Envy, and Evil Inclinations, and cause our hearts to melt in gratitude toward Him that has been so kind to us! Therefore the Philosophers say with great Truth, that the L. P. either finds a good man or makes one.

"AND DARKNESS WILL FLY FROM THEE. By invigorating the Organs the Soul makes use of for communicating with exterior objects, the Soul must acquire greater powers not only for conception but also for retention, and therefore if we wish to obtain still more knowledge, the organs and secret springs of physical life being wonderfully strengthened and invigorated, the Soul must acquire new powers for conceiving and retaining, especially if we pray to God for knowledge, and confirm our prayers by faith, all Obscurity must vanish of course. That this has not been the case with all possessors, was their own fault, as they contented themselves merely with the Transmutation of Metals.

"(Use.) THIS IS THE STRENGTH OF ALL POWERS. This is a very strong figure, to indicate that the L. P. positively does possess all the Powers concealed in Nature, not for destruction but for exaltation and regeneration of matter, in the three Departments of Nature.

"WITH THIS THOU WILT BE ABLE TO OVERCOME ALL THINGS, AND TO TRANSMUTE ALL WHAT IS FINE (☉☽)

AND WHAT IS COARSE (♃♄ ♀ ♂ ☿ Image). It will conquer every subtil Thing, of course, as it refixes the most subtil Oxygen into its own fiery Nature and that with more power, penetration and virtue, in a tenfold ratio, at every multiplication, and each time in a much shorter period, until its power becomes incalculable, which multiplied power also penetrates [overcomes] every Solid Thing, such as unconquerable Gold and Silver, the otherwise unalterable Mercury, Crystals and Glass Fluxes, to which it is able to give natural hardness and fixity, as Philaletha does attest, and is proved by an artificial Diamond, in my father's time, in possession of Prince Lichtenstein in Vienna, valued at Five Hundred Thousand Ducats, fixed by the Lapis [Philosopher's Stone].

"IN THIS MANNER THE WORLD WAS CREATED; THE ARRANGEMENTS TO FOLLOW THIS ROAD ARE HIDDEN. FOR THIS REASON I AM CALLED CHIRAM TELAT MECHASOT, ONE IN ESSENCE, BUT THREE IN ASPECT. IN THIS TRINITY IS HIDDEN THE WISDOM OF THE WHOLE WORLD (i.e., in Chiram and its Use). It is thought that Hermes was Moses or Zoroaster, otherwise Hermes signifies a Serpent, and the Serpent used to be an Emblem of Knowledge or Wisdom. The Serpent is met with everywhere amongst the Hieroglyphics of the ancient Egyptians, so is the Globe with Wings, the Sun and Moon, Dragons and Griffins, whereby the Egyptians denoted their sublime knowledge of the Lapis Philosophorum, according to Suidas, the hints in the Scriptures, and even De Non where he speaks of the sanctuaries of the ancient Egyptian Temples.

"IT IS ENDED NOW, WHAT I HAVE SAID CONCERNING THE EFFECTS OF THE SUN. FINISH OF THE TABULA SMARAGDINA. What I have said or taught of the Solar Work, is now finished. The perfect Seed, fit for multiplication.

"This I know is acknowledged to be the genuine Tabula Smaragdina Hermetis."

A LETTER FROM THE BROTHERS OF R. C. (ROSE CROSS)

Although Eugenius Philalethes disclaimed membership in the Rosicrucian Fraternity, it is believed that for a number of years he was the head of that Order. In a little work called Lumen de Lumine, or A New Magical Light Discovered and Communicated to the World, published in London in 1651, Eugenius Philalethes gives a remarkable letter, presumably from the Rosicrucian Order. Accompanying the letter is an emblematic figure setting forth in symbolic form the processes and formulæ of the Philosopher's Stone. This epistle is an excellent example of the Rosicrucian system of combining abstract theological speculations with concrete chemical formulæ. With the aid of the material contained in various parts of this present book the student would do well to set himself the task of solving the riddle contained in this hieroglyph.

"A Letter from the Brothers of R. C. Concerning the Invisible, Magical Mountain, And the Treasure therein Contained.

"Every man naturally desires a superiority, to have treasures of Gold and Silver [intellect and soul], and to seem great in the eyes of the world. God indeed created all things for the use of man, that he might rule over them, and acknowledge therein the singular goodness and omnipotence of God, give Him thanks for His benefits, honor Him and praise Him. But there is no man looks after these things, otherwise than by spending his days idly; they would enjoy them without any previous labor and danger; neither do they look them out of that place where God hath treasured them up, Who expects also that man should seek for them there, and to those that seek will He give them. But there is not any that labors for a possession in that place, and therefore these riches are not found: For the way to this place, and the place itself hath been unknown for a long time, and it is hidden from the greatest part of the world. But notwithstanding it be difficult and laborious to find Out this way and place, yet the place should be sought after.

"But it is not the will of God to conceal anything from those that are His, and therefore in this last age, before the final judgment comes, all these things shall be manifested to those that are worthy: As He Himself (though obscurely, lest it should be manifested to, the unworthy) hath spoken in a certain place: There is nothing covered that shall not be revealed, and hidden that shall not be known. We therefore being moved by the Spirit of God, do declare the will of God to the world, which we have also already performed and published in several languages. But most men either revile, or contemne that, our Manifesto, (the Fama and Confessio Fraternitatis) or else waiving the Spirit of God, they expect the proposals thereof from us, supposing we will straightway teach them how to make gold by Art, or furnish them with ample treasures, whereby they may live pompously in the face of the world, swagger, and make wars, turn usurers, gluttons, and drunkards, live unchastely, and defile their whole life With several other sins, all which things are contrary to the blessed will of God. These men should have learnt from those Ten Virgins (whereof five that were foolish demanded oil for their lamps, from those five that were wise) how that the case is much otherwise.

"It is expedient that every man should labor for this treasure by the assistance of God, and his own particular search and industry. But the perverse intentions of these fellows we understand out of their own writings, by the singular grace and revelation of God. We do stop our ears, and wrap ourselves as it were in clouds, to avoid the bellowings and howlings of those men, who in vain cry out for gold. And hence indeed it comes to pass that they brand us with infinite calumnies and slanders, which notwithstanding we do not resent but God in His good time will judge them for it. But after that we had well known (though unknown to you) and perceived also by your writing how diligently you are to peruse the Holy Scripture, and seek the true knowledge of God: we have also above many thousands, thought you worthy of some answer, and we signify this much to you by the will of God and the admonition of the Holy Ghost.

"There is a mountain situated in the midst of the earth, or center of the world, which is both small and great. It is soft, also above measure hard and stony. It is far off, and near at hand, but by the providence of God, invisible. In it are hidden most ample treasures, which the world is not able to value. This mountain by envy of the devil, who always opposeth the glory of God and the happiness of man, is compassed about with very cruel beasts and other [sic] ravenous birds, which make the way thither both difficult and dangerous; and therefore hitherto, because the time is not yet come, the way thither could not be sought after nor found out. But now at last the way is to be found by those that are worthy, but notwithstanding by every man's self-labor and endeavors.

"To this mountain you shall go in a certain night (when it: comes) most long and most dark, and see that you prepare yourselves by prayer. Insist upon the way that: leads to the mountain, but ask not of any man where the way lies: only follow your Guide, who will offer himself to you, and will meet you in the way but you shall not know him. This Guide will bring you to the mountain at midnight, when all things are silent and dark. It is necessary that you arm yourselves with a resolute heroic courage, lest you fear those things that will happen, and so fall back. You need no sword, nor any other bodily weapons, only call upon God sincerely and heartily.

"When you have discovered the mountain, the first miracle that will appear is this. A most vehement and very great wind, that will shake the mountain and shatter the rocks to pieces. You shall be encountered also by lions and dragons and other terrible beasts, but fear not any of these things. Be resolute and rake heed that you return not, for your Guide who brought you thither will not suffer any evil to befall you. As for the treasure, it is not yet discovered but it is very near. After this wind will come an earthquake, that will overthrow those things which the wind hath left and make all flat. But be sure that you fall not off.

"The earthquake being past, there shall follow afire, that will consume the earthly rubbish, and discover the treasure, but as yet you cannot see it. After all these things and near the daybreak there shall be a great calm, and you shall see the Day-Star arise and the dawning will appear, and you shall perceive a great treasure. The chiefest thing in it, and the most perfect, is a certain exalted tincture, with which the world (if it served God and were worthy of such gifts) might be tinged and turned into most pure gold.

"This tincture being used, as your Guide shall reach you, will make you young when you are old, and you shall perceive no disease in any part of your bodies. By means of this tincture also you shall find pearls of that excellency which cannot be imagined. But do not you arrogate anything to yourselves because of your present power, but be contented with that which your Guide shall communicate to you. Praise God perpetually for this His gift, and have a special care that you use it not for worldly pride, but employ it in such works which are contrary to the world. Use it rightly and enjoy it so, as if you had it not. Live a temperate life, and beware of all sin, otherwise your Guide will forsake you, and you shall be deprived of this happiness. For know this of a truth, whosoever abuseth this tincture and lives not exemplarly, purely, and devoutly before men he shall lose this benefit, and scarce any hope will there be left ever to recover it afterwards."

If, as transcendentalists believe, the initiations into the Fraternity of the Rose Cross were given in the invisible worlds which surround and interpenetrate the visible universe, it is not beyond the range of possibility that this allegory is to be considered in the light of an initiatory ritual as well as an alchemical formula.

As has been noted, it is difficult to secure a complete formula for any of the alchemical operations. The one presented here is the most nearly complete of any available. The collecting of the rays and energies of the celestial bodies as precipitated in dew is a process which Paracelsus used with great success. Bear constantly in mind that these processes are only for those who have been properly instructed in the secret art.

"A TRUE REVELATION OF THE MANUAL OPERATION FOR THE UNIVERSAL MEDICINE COMMONLY CALLED 'THE PHILOSOPHER'S STONE.' By the celebrated philosopher of Leyden, as attested upon his deathbed with his own Blood, Anno Domini 1662. To my Loving Cousin and Son, the True Hermetic Philosopher--

"Dear Loving Cousin and Son:

"Although I had resolved never to give in writing to any person the secret of the Ancient Sages, yet notwithstanding out of peculiar affection and love to you, I have taken it upon me, to which the nearness of our relation obliges me, and especially because this temporal life is short, and Art is very dark and you may therefore not attain the wished for end;--but my Son because so precious a jewel belongs not to swine; and also this so great a gift of God may be treated carefully and Christianlike, in consideration thereof I do so largely declare myself to thee.

"I conjure thee with hand and mouth sacredly;

"1st. That most especially thou faithfully keep the same from all wicked, lustful and criminal persons.

"2dly. That thou exalt not thyself in any way.

"3dly. That thou seek to advance the honor of thy Creator of all things and the good of thy neighbor, preserve it sacredly that thy Lord may not have cause to complain of thee at the last day. I have written here in this treatise such a part of the Kingdom of Heaven, just as I myself have worked this treasure and finished it with my fingers, therefore I have subscribed all this work with my blood, lying on my deathbed in Leyden.

"THE PROCESS--In the Name of God, take of the purest and cleanest salt, sea salt, so as it is made by the sun itself, such as is brought by shipping from Spain, (I used salt that came from St. Uber) let it be dried in a warm stove, grind it in a stone mortar, as fine as possible to a powder that it may be so much the easier dissolve and taken up by our Dew-water, which is thus to be had in the months of May or June: When the Moon is at the full, observe when the dew falls with an East or South East wind. Then you must have sticks about one and a half feet high above the ground when driven in the Earth. Upon two or three such sticks, lay some four square plates of glass, and as the dew falls it easily fastens on the glass like a vapour, then have glass Vessels in readiness, let the dew drain from the sides of the glasses into your vessels. Do this until you have enough. The full of the Moon is a good season, afterwards it will be hard."

Image
THE INVISIBLE MAGICAL MOUNTAIN.
From Phililethales' Lumen de Lumine.
On Page 24 of Lumen de Lumine, Eugenius Philalethes describes the magical mountain as follows:
"This is that emblematical magical type, which Thalia delivered to me in the invisible Guiana. The first and superior Part of it represents the Mountains of the Moon. The philosophers commonly call them the Mountains of India, on whose tops grows their secret and famous Lunaria. It is an Herb easy to be found, but [for the fact] that men are blind discovers itself and shines after night like pearl. The earth of these mountains is very red and soft beyond all expression. It is full of crystalline rocks, which the philosophers call their glass and their stone: birds and fish (say they) bring it to them. Of these mountains speaks Hali the Arabian, a most excellent judicious author: 'Go, my son, to the Mountains of India, and to their quarries or caverns, and take thence our precious stones which dissolve or melt in water, when they are mingled therewith. Much indeed might be spoken of these mountains, if it were lawful to publish their mysteries, but one thing I shall not forbear to tell you. They are very dangerous places after night, for they are haunted with fires and other strange apparitions, (as a I am told by the Magi) by certain spirits, which dabble lasciviously with the sperm of the world and imprint their imaginations in, producing many times fantastic and monstrous generations. The access and pilgrimage to this place, with the difficulties which attend them, are faithfully and magisterially described by the Brothers of R.C." (Set accompanying letter.)


The solar rays descending from the sun carry with them solar sulphur--the Divine Fire. These rays are crystallized by contact with the lunar rays. The solar rays are also met by the emanations pouring upward from the earth's surface and are thus still further crystallized into a partly tangible substance, which is soluble in pure water. This substance is the "Magical Mountain of the Moon" referred to in the R. C. letter. The crystallization of the solar and lunar rays in water (dew) produces the virgin earth--a pure, invisible substance, uncontaminated by material matter. When the virgin earth crystals are wet, they appear green; when dry, white.

Von Welling makes a suggestion for the extraction of the solar life from stagnant water, but is reticent both as to naming the essence extracted and also as to the various processes through which it must pass to be refined and increased in power. His hint, however, is both valuable and unusual:

"Take sweet clean water and seal it in a large bottle, leaving about one-fourth empty. Place the bottle in the sun for some weeks until it rots, showing a precipitation in the bottom. This precipitation, when properly manipulated by distillation, will produce a clear, fiery, burning oil, the constituents and use of which are only known to the wise."

The philosopher of Leyden continues: "Now when you have enough of your dew close your glasses exactly, and keep it till you use it, that none of its spirits may evaporate, which may easily happen. Set it therefore in a cool place, that no warmth may come to it, or else the subtle spirit will rise and be gone; which will not so happen if after you have filled your glasses with Dew quite full, you close them very well with wax.

"Now in the Name of God, take of this Dew-water as much as thou wilt, put in a clean dissolving glass, then cast a little of your forementioned powdered salt into it to be dissolved, and continue to put it in till your Dew-water will dissolve no more or till the salt lies in it four days without being dissolved, then it has enough, and unto your Dew is given its proper powder. Of this compounded water, take as much as thou wilt, I took about a pound and a half, and put it into a round vial with a short neck, fill it with out water and lute it with a good lute, a cover and stopple that fits it well, that the subtle and living spirit of the dew may not fume away, for if they should the soul of the salt will never be stirred up, nor the work ever brought to a right end. Let the lute dry very well of itself, and set it in the furnace of B. M. to putrefy. Make a slow fire and let it digest for forty days or fifty, and that the fume of the water be continually round about it, and you will see your matter grow black, which is a token of its putrefaction.

"As soon as you have taken it out, have your dry furnace ready. Set your glass with the matter into an inner globe to coagulate, give it a slow degree of fire, continue it equally for twelve or fifteen days, and your matter will begin to coagulate and to fasten round about your glass like a gray salt, which as soon as you see and before it be two days, slacken the fire that it may cool leisurely. Then have in readiness your putrefying furnace as before. Set your glass therein and give the same degree of fire as before. Let it stand twelve days, and again you will see the matter resolve and open as before, and open itself, but you must every time see that the lute and your glass is not hurt. When you set your glass in the putrefying furnace, take care that the neck of your glass is covered with a wooden or glass stopper that fits it exactly, that the moisture of the water may not come at it.

"When you see it black set your glass as before to coagulate and when it begins to be of a grayish color and whitish, set it in a third time to putrefy, and coagulate to the fifth time, until you see that your water in its dissolution is clean, pellucid and clear, and that it appears in its Calcination of a fine white like Snow. Then it is prepared and becomes a Salt fixed which will melt on hot Silver plate like wax; but before you set this your Salt out, set it again [in] the furnace of putrefaction that it may dissolve of itself, then let it cool, open your Glass and you will find your Matter lessened a third part. But instead of your former Salt Water you will have a fine Sweet and very penetrating Water which the Philosophers have hid under very wonderful Names--It is the Mercury of all true Philosophers, the Water out of which comes Gold and Silver, for they say its Father is Gold and its Mother is Silver. Thus hast thou the strength of both these Luminaries conjoined in this Water, most true, in its right Pondus.

"Prescription. 5 Drops of this Water taken inwardly strengthens the understanding and memory, and opens to us most wonderful and sweet things, of which no man hath heard, and of which I dare not further write, because of the Oath I made God to the contrary. Time and the holy use of this blessed Water will teach us, as soon as you have taken it inwardly such influence will happen to thee as if the whole heavens and all the stars with their powers are working in thee. All Knowledge and secret Arts will be opened to thee as in a dream, but the most excellent of all is, you will perfectly learn rightly to know all creatures in their Nature, and by means thereof, the true understanding of God, the Creator of us, Heaven and Earth, like David and Moses and all the Saints of God, for the wisdom of our fountain of living Water will instruct thee as it did Solomon and the Brethren of our fraternity."

In his rare treatise on Salt, Sulphur and Mercury, von Welling discloses a secret: not generally revealed in alchemical writings, namely, that the alchemists were concerned not only with the transmutation of metals but had a complete cosmological and philosophical system based upon the Qabbalah.

According to von Welling, the universal salt (in watery form) is a positive cure for all the physical ailments of mankind; it is in every living thing, but from some things it is more easily secured than from others: especially is this true of virgin earth; it is the universal solvent, the alkahest. The same writer also states that in the first stages of its preparation this salt will cure any and all diseases of the heart. The anonymous philosopher of Leyden continues:

"Would you now proceed further with our blessed Water to the forementioned intention of preparing a Tincture for Metals, hearken my Son--

"Take in the NAME of the Lord, of thy Paradisiacal Water, of heavenly Water of Mercury, as much as thou wilt, put it into a glass to dissolve, and set it in a slow heat of Ashes, that it may just feel the warmth, then have ready well purified Gold for the Red, or Silver for the White Elixir, for in both the Processes are the same. Let your Gold or Silver be beaten as thin as leaf Gold, cast it by degrees into your dissolving Glass, that contains your blessed Water, as you did in the beginning with your Salt, and it will melt like Ice in Warm Water, and continue so to do till your Gold or Silver lie therein four days without dissolving, then it has received its due Pondus. Then put this dissolution as before into a round Glass, fill it two thirds parts full, seal it hermetically as before, let your Sigillum be well dried. Set it in the furnace of Balneum Vapori, make a fire and let it remain forty days, as before, then will the Gold or Silver be dissolved radically and will turn of the deepest black in the world, which as soon as you see, have your other drying furnace in readiness."

Continuing: "Philosophers say there is no true solution of the body without a proceeding coagulation of the spirit, for they are interchangeably mixed in a due proportion, whereby the bodily essence becomes of a spiritual penetrating nature. On the other hand, the incomprehensible spiritual essential virtue is also made corporeal by the fire, because there is made between them so near a relation or friendship, like as the heavens operate to the very Depth of Earth, and producing from thence all the treasures and riches of the whole World.

"Admirandum Naturæ Operationem in Archidoxes Cognitam.

"With this Powder--You may as follows project on metals. Take five parts of fine Gold or Silver according as you work, and melt it in a Crucible. Wrap up your Medicine in Wax, cast it therein, give a strong fire for an hour, then take the Crucible out, as it were, calcined, then cast one part on ten parts of imperfect metals, be it what it will, and the same will be immediately changed into purer Metal, than what is brought out of the Mines and produced by Melting; and when you augment it in strength and virtue by resolving and coagulating, the fifth time it will resolve itself in three days and be coagulated in twenty-four hours time, to an incredible and most highly pellucid Stone or Red Shining burning Coal. For the white work it will become like a white stream of Lightning.

"Of this last coagulation take one part, cast it upon five thousand of melted Gold or Silver as before. It changes the same into perfect Medicine, one part whereof will tinge one hundred thousand parts of melted imperfect Metals into the very finest Gold or Silver. So far I have brought and further I would not come, for as I would set in the matter [to distill] six times in twelve hours, it subtilized so highly that the most part (like somewhat most wonderful to behold) past through the Glass causing an inexpressible odoriferous Smell. Take heed that it happens not to you.

"Many more wonders of this holy Art might be added, namely how to prepare therewith all sorts of precious Stones, and other most admirable things, but it would require too great a book to express the whole as it ought to be, especially as the Art is endless and not to be apprehended with one view, and my purpose has been, Loving Cousin and Son, devoutly to lead thee into the Mysteries of Nature and this holy Science, and I have faithfully performed it."

In conclusion, the letter states: "Go thou to work as I have done before thee, fear God, Love thy neighbour from the bottom of thy Soul sincerely. So will in the Manual operation, everything to thee, and when thou art at work therein many of our brethren will reveal themselves to thee, of our holy order, privately; For I have on my part by the Eternal God wrote the truth which I found out by prayer and searching into Nature, which work I have seen with my eyes, and with my hands extracted. Therefore also I have subscribed this Testament with my own blood, the last day of my Life on my deathbed. Actum Leyden, 27 March 1662."
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Re: The Secret Teachings of All Ages, by Manly P. Hall

Postby admin » Sat Jul 11, 2015 1:16 am

THE HERMETIC AND ALCHEMICAL FIGURES OF CLAUDIUS DE DOMINICO CELENTANO VALLIS NOVI FROM A MANUSCRIPT WRITTEN AND ILLUMINATED AT NAPLES A.D. 1606

No better way can be found of introducing to the "Royal Art" a seeker after the mysteries of symbolical philosophy than to place at his disposal an actual example of alchemical writing. The text of this manuscript is as enigmatic as are its diagrams; but to him who will meditate upon the profound significance of both, the deeper issues of mysticism in due time will be made clear. An unknown person through whose hands this manuscript passed wrote thus of it:

"Because of its drawings and illustrated expositions, the manuscript is of preeminent importance to the Rosicrucians and the contemporary order of Freemasons. The first, and larger, part of the illustrations deals with the Hermetic philosophy, explaining its teachings and doctrines. Interspersed among these are portraits of great teachers and satirical representations of bunglers and their mistaken views. The systematically arranged part shows with wonderful clearness the color development of the alchemical processes from blue-gold over black to white and rose. Throughout it treats of the change in human beings and not of the making of gold. Ever upon the Grade of Black (the return into Chaos from which new creations are possible) follows the Grade of the Neophytes, the New Birth, which is often repeated with impressive lucidity. The black stage occurs as usual through fire. This unopened and unpublished manuscript belongs to the order of the most important Precepts and Documents of the Rosicrucians, and Freemasons. A search through the museums and library collections of Germany has failed to reveal any item of even a similar character."

In addition to the 26 leaves here reproduced there are ten bottles or retorts, each half filled with varicolored substances. These bottles can be so easily described that it is unnecessary to reproduce them. The first bottle (from the mouth of which issues a golden shrub with three blossoms) contains a bluish-gray liquid, the entire figure being called "Our Quicksilver." Under the vessel is a verse containing the significant words: "He will have white garments for black and then red." The second bottle (from the neck of which rise four golden flowers) also contains the bluish-gray substance termed quicksilver. Below the bottle is the admonition to "make spirit of the body and grace of the gross, that the corporeal may become incorporeal."

The third bottle is entirely black save for a golden tree trunk having six lopped-off branches and terminating in five branches which end in knobs and protrude from the neck of the bottle. The state of the substance is termed "Blackness showing through the Head of the Raven." Under the bottle occurs the statement that "the tincture of the Philosophers is hidden in the air like the soul in the human body." The fourth bottle is of the deepest blackness and is called "The Head of the Raven." Nothing rises from the neck of the vessel, for the earth (its contents) is described as "submerged in Chaos." The bottom of the fifth bottle contains a bluish-gray, spotted liquid, the upper part being filled with a brick-colored substance. Above are the words: "Sixth Raven's Head"; below is added: "At the bottom of the vessel worms are born."

The lower half of the sixth bottle is of a bluish-gray, the u per half black, the entire figure being termed "Seventh Raven's Head." A child is seated beside the bottle, concerning whom it is written: "This newly-born, black son is called Elixir and will be made perfectly white." The seventh bottle is black below and black spotted with red above. The process is thus described: "Black blacker than black, for many divers colors will appear. Those black clouds will [descend] to the body whence they came, and the junction of body, soul, and spirit has been completed and turned to ashes."

The eighth bottle is divided horizontally by a golden band, from which rises a golden stem ending in five leaves protruding from the neck of the bottle. The contents of the vessel are transparent, and it is written that "the black clouds are past and the great whiteness has been completed." The ninth bottle (from the neck of which rises a golden white rose) is also partly filled with a transparent liquid. The rose is made to say: "He who blanches me makes me red." The tenth and last bottle represents the consummation of the Great Work. The lower half of the vessel is filled with the blood-red Elixir and from the neck rises a red rose with many petals and of extreme beauty. After declaring all the planets to have been present at the consummation of the Great Work, the author of the document concludes: "I gave to the Master [spirit] so much silver and gold that be can never be poor."

In his dedication the author and illustrator of the manuscript declares that he has set forth all the operations of the Great Work. He prays to the Holy Spirit that he may be included in the number of those who have pursued this most noble of the sciences and that he may be set always in the path of righteousness. Exclusive of his own researches, the main sources of his information are said to be the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas, Raymond Lully, and Arnold of Villa Nova.

To protect themselves from the persecution of despotic theology the mediæval alchemists couched their philosophy in Christian terminology, although the great secrets of the Art were derived largely from Egyptian or Arabian adepts. The Mohammedans were masters of the Hermetic secrets and even the great Paracelsus secured from them the major part of his knowledge. In their manifestoes the Rosicrucians also disclose the Arabian source of their secret doctrine. Hence it should be borne in mind that the relating of the alchemical teachings to Biblical symbolism was a gesture of expediency. In their search of the Scriptures for the arcana of Israel, the Qabbalists substantiated in great measure the alchemical interpretations of the Bible, for the soul of alchemy is one with that of Qabbalism. Both schools have a common end, being who concerned with the mystery of human regeneration, despite apparent discrepancies in their symbolism.

The publication of this manuscript places at the student's disposal the most profound secrets of the Hermetic Art. At first the task of decipherment may seem hopeless and the superficially-minded will be tempted to scoff at the possibility of real knowledge being perpetuated in such unconventional fashion. The scoffer will not realize that one of the purposes of the document is to awaken ridicule and thus preserve more effectually its arcana from the profane. A few sheets (such as those here reproduced) represent the life work of one who has consecrated himself to the task of tearing aside the veil of the World Virgin. Years of research and experimentation, days of incessant labor, nights of prayer and meditation, and at last comes the realization of accomplishment! This is the real story told by the grotesque figures drawn so painstakingly upon the faded, worm-eaten pages. Those who have glimpsed the greater realities of being realize that the fundamental verities of life find at best only imperfect expression through physical symbols. Only those who have passed through the travail of spiritual birth can adequately comprehend and properly reverence the pathetic efforts to portray for others that knowledge necessarily locked within the heart of the one who knows.

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Leaf 1. The top line reads: "Our earliest medicine was made of natural objects." About the king and queen appears the statement that to them a son shall be born "in two trees of the vine," resembling his father and without equal in all the world. About the vase is written: "Green and white." "The vase flame color, the flowers green." "Our water, our silver." The lines below read: "The material of the Philosopher's Stone is that thick, viscous water, which either heat or cold congeals. It is Mercury boiled down and thickened, cooked in neutral earth with sulphurous heat and is called the Prime Material of the metals. In caverns yet dark, and forbidding mountains, if a Stone be found which a thousand years ago Nature made out of her fruits, it will bring him that has it out of trouble. * * * Listen carefully to all my verses; I speak them without veil and without deception.

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Leaf 2. At the top is a quotation from St. Thomas Aquinas concerning the composition of the Philosopher's Stone, which is described as of the purest transparency; in it all the forms of the elements and their contrarieties were visible. Beneath the figure of St. Thomas Aquinas is a short paragraph praising the excellence of the Philosophic Stone, declaring that from the one substance can be derived three and from the three, two. To the right of St. Thomas Aquinas is a likeness of Raymond Lully seated in the door of his hermitage. Under his feet appears a quotation from this celebrated alchemist, beginning with the question, "What is the Philosopher's Stone?" After declaring it to be a reddish, fixed mercury, Lully swears to the Almighty that he has told the truth and that it is not permissible to say more. (The original manuscript is mutilated at this point.)

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Leaf 3. The writing at the top of the page reads: "Death of Saturn; life of Mercury." After describing the use of the saturnine substances, the key to the process is declared to be depicted below. The verse reads "This [the stone] is made of four elements. This is the truth in all Nature. Take it in hand, bright and shining, with all diligence and great care and then try to bind all securely together side by side, so the fire may cause alarm." Above the human figure is written: "Saturn is almost dead." To the right if the devouring serpent is a statement of Albertus Magnus that Saturn and Mercury are the first principles of the Stone. It also declares that Nature wisely provided a mixture of elements so that earth can communicate its dryness to fire, fire its heat to air, air its moisture to water, and water its coldness to earth. (Text about the vase is illegible in original.)

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Leaf 4. At the top: "Let them believe that . everything is possible. The art is fleeting, bright and rare, and not believed by the foolish." The words between the sun and crescent read "It is hidden," and on the panel across the body "The Book of life and true Treasury of the World." The panel to the left of the figure says "Moving almost all, and the soul of its body returns to the place from which it had fled, and ripens seven months or nine, and the King crowned with his diadem appears." The right panel states: "There are three Mercuries: animal, vegetable, and mineral." The text below is of such a cryptic nature that to translate it is well nigh impossible. It declares that by putting fire beneath the feet of the symbolic figure it is possible to extract therefrom the sun and the moon which the human body is shown elevating to a position of dignity above its head.

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Leaf 5. In the upper panel it is declared that the sun-bird battles with the earth-serpent, who, tearing out his own entrails, gives them to the bird. The spirit is vivified and Lazarus with joy is raised from the dead. Above the bird is written: "This is the sun in the form of a bird," and above the dragon "This is the dragon devouring the bird. The first operation." The panel of text at the lower left reads in substance: "When our sperm (quicksilver) is mixed with the mother of elements (earth), the action is called coitus. The detention by the earth of a bit of quicksilver is called conception. The earth grows and multiplies and the operation is called impregnation. When earth is whitened with water and made of uniform color and appearance, it is called birth and the King is born out of fire." The text at lower right was deliberately mutilated to conceal a too evident secret.

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Leaf 6. This plate shows all the secrets of the great Stone. In the center stands the Paschal Virgin, in her hair the prime virtue which is described as an herb flourishing in wells. The hands hold the symbols of the spiritual and material elements. The statement at the upper left is to the effect that there are four spirits with two faces, which are called the elements. At the upper right it is written that fire lives on air, air on water, water on earth, and thus the Stone lives Peacefully on all the pure elements. Under the sun appears the word Summer; under the moon, Autumn. About the tree on the left with its attendant eyes are the words: "Turn away your eyes to [from?] the fire. There is space [?]." About the tree to the right. "Open your eyes to the fire. There is time." The lower panel opens with this sentence "I am exalted above the circles of world."

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Leaf 7. The verse at the top reads:," This Stone is so noble and worthy that Nature has hidden it in her recesses. Its soul is all fair, and pure, for it is the true sun. I inform you of this. Keep it removed, apart and separated. Whatever boon you crave, it will come to you bounteously. without sin, with pleasure and delight." The seated figure on the left holding aloft the hammer is described as breaking hard stone, while the words beside the man with the retort read: "Breaking of stone our replenishment." Between the standing figures below is the exclamation; "O Sages, seek and ye shall find my Stone!" Under the outstretched hand of the man with a basket appear the words: "Draw out sorerem [?] in the bottom." Below the pool which the man on the left is stirring appears the simple statement: "Our healing water." The faces of the four men are extremely well drawn.

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Leaf 8. Under the sun, moon, and Mercury are the words Three and One, an inference that the three are one. The words under the flower stems read: "Whiteness forty days after ashes." Under the blossoms is written: (left) "Minor time of the Stone"; (right) "The selected red." Between the arms of the central figure appears: "Let one pound of Mercury be placed." To the left is written: "If you who read shall have known this figure, you will possess the whole science of the Stone"; to the right: "And if you do not acknowledge it, you will be stiff-necked and dull." Above the sun is the word Father; above the satyr, "Ferment of the work." Beside the child is the sentence: "The son of the moon would threw the Stone into the fire--his mother." Above the flaming basket is written: "I am the true Stone." Under the central figure are the words: "A moderate fire is the master of the work."

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Leaf 9. In the upper left it is written that without the light of the Moon the Sun does not heat the earth and that into the Moon the Sun emits its fruits. In the upper right the true herb of the philosophers is described, and it is declared that whoever believes in and it shall be [spiritually] rich. The panel concludes thus: "Understand thoroughly what it is that the man has in either hand if you wish to be enlightened." The text to the left above the sun reads: "Entirely without the Sun and Moon, make dye; dissolve, congeal, and like produces for itself like." The words to the right of the man holding the Philosopher's herb declare sublimation to be the beginning, the middle and the end of the Great Work. The last sentence reads: "Out of the Sun and Moon make a thing of equal parts, and by their union, God willing, let the Philosopher's Stone be made."

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Leaf 10. The two short lines of text at upper left read: "Some take a recent stone." The lines to the right of the symbol of Mars (iron) admonish the student to control his appetites and apply his mind to the accumulation of knowledge. No satisfactory translation can be found for the words under the outstretched arm of the man holding the upper part of the tree. The lower panel reads thus: "After the Stone has been well refined it will appear to penetrate thoroughly. It should be put into its vessel with its water. Close it well with a little fire, and await the wonders of Nature." The large red oval filling the lower half of the leaf is evidently the egg or vessel of the Sages. The tree is a symbol of the growth of the sacred metals, for the alchemists affirmed that the metals are like plants and grow in the rocks, spreading their branches (veins) through the interstices.

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Leaf 11. The fount is described as that from which the two Mercuries of the Philosophers are extracted. At the upper left is described the white Mercury and at the right the red Mercury. The text about the fountain declares that Saturn collects the white Mercury, which is called the Water of Earth; and the Earth collects the red Mercury, which is called the Water of Heaven. The text to the left of the frog reads: "Through Him who created the Heavens and the Earth I am the Philosopher's Stone, and in my body I carry something the wise seek. If such a charm be extracted from me, it will be a sweet refreshment for you. I am an animal having father and mother, and father and mother were created; and in my body are contained the four elements, and I am before father and mother and I am a poisonous animal." The lines at the right describe distilling and calcining processes.

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Leaf 12. The three words at the top read: "This is Nature." The lines above the donkey read: "This is the Philosophers' donkey who wished to rise to the practice of the Philosopher's Some." The three lines below the animal are translated: "Frogs gather in multitudes but science consists of clear water made from the Sun and Moon." The text under the symbolic bird is as follows: "This is fortune with two wings. Whosoever has it knows that fruit will in such away be produced. A great philosopher has shown that the stone is a certain white sun, to see which needs a telescope. To dissolve it in water requires the Sun and Moon, and here one must open 200 telescopes, putting body and soul in one mass. And here is lost the mass; other sages cook the frogs and add nothing, if the juice of the Wise you wish to enjoy." To the Greeks the frog symbolized both metempsychosis and earthly humidity.

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Leaf 13. This Page contains but two figures. At the left stands Morienus, the philosopher, pointing towards the salamander who "lives and grows in fire." Morienus, who was born in the twelfth century, became the disciple of the great Arabian alchemist Adfar, from whom he learned the Hermetic arts. Morienus prepared the Philosophical Elixir for the Sultan of Egypt, inscribing upon the vase in which he placed the precious substance the words: "He who possesses all has no need of others." He spent many years as a hermit near Jerusalem. The lines below the salamander are: "Let the fire be of a perfect red color; the earth white, the water clear. Then compound them by philosophical means and calcine them as many times with the water which the body had as to turn it white by its kindness. Having done this, you will have the greatest treasure in the world."

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Leaf 14. The three words at the top of the left page are translated: "The man that digs." Above the birds it is declared that none but the cocks of Hermes, the two Mercuries, shall put hand to the plow, and only after irrigation will the earth bring forth her fruits. The seated man is Count Bernard of Treviso, who says: "Work the earth with Mercury." (See chapter on Alchemy and Its Exponents.) The three sentences to the Count's left read: "Go to the fire and with Mercury, thy brother, await me for a month. Crumble the stone I gave thee and I shall go to the fire. Thy death, my life. I shall net die but, living, tell of the works of this, my master." Bernard of Treviso in his alchemical speculation emphasized the necessity of meditation upon the philosophical writings of the great adepts rather than chemical experimentation. He ultimately discovered the "Stone."

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Leaf 15. The first sentence reads: "The fruit of plants by virtue of the Sun, our Stone." The boy holding the dish is made to say: "Drink here all ye that are athirst. Come unto me, run to the waters. Here drink, without price, and drink your fill. Open your eyes and see the wonders of the earth. They learn, my thirsty twenty and four." Beneath the boy are the words: "In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth, and divided the waters from the waters. Bless the waters which are above the Heavens." The circle contains this statement: "The earth without form and void. Out of the stars come the rains." The lower left panel continues the alchemical process, ending with admonition to renounce the misery of worldly existence. Above is a prayer to the Virgin Mary which opens thus: "Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord be with thee. Blessed thou among women."

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Leaf 16. The first sentence reads: "The dead bodies remain; the spirits are freed by the death in the bodies. You will ride with that death with a scythe, and the light of the Sun, the Moon, and the fixed stars." Over the scythe is written: "Subject to the Sun, the Moon and Azoth, complete the Work." The four words in the curve of the scythe blade say: "Man's head, head of raven." The three lines to the right are interpreted thus: "This figure is called Laton, for it looks black in a vessel, and is the beginning of corruption." The text below the ladder states: "This is the ladder of primitive matter which when placed in a vessel turns black, the gradually changes to white by the scale [ladder] of digestion, according to the degree of heat." Here a ladder is used to signify the natural steps up which matter must ascend before it can attain to a truly spiritual state.

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Leaf 17. The verse at the top of the page reads: "Not only must this material be fixed, but it must be allowed to enter into everything so that this material may be well completed and have infinite virtue. Then by making it thick, it becomes at once all white, sublimation from white it becomes shining." Above the sun are the words: "God and Nature do nothing in vain." The man on the left is a mediæval conception of Hermes, the great Egyptian philosopher; the one on the right is Christopher, the philosopher of Paris. Above the latter is written: "If the Stone is black, it is not useless." The words over the retort are: "There is air, fire, water, and earth." Below is added: "A dissolution of the body is the first step. " The curious chemical apparatus must be considered purely symbolic in this work and, as its author himself says, is intended to give only a hint of the "Art."

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Leaf 18. At the left holding a book stands Aristotle, who is described as the most learned of all the Greeks. The tree surmounted by the Sun and Mon. is accompanied by the wards: "When the Stone is dead, that is changed to water, in this it will produce flowers." Beneath Aristotle and the prostrate human figure from which rises the flowering tree are these statements: "He who makes everything descend from heaven to earth, and then ascend from earth to heaven, has information about the Stone. For in Mercury there is something the wise seek, not invoked except by white or red ferment." The first part of this quotation is based upon the Emerald Tablet of Hermes (which see). In ordinary man, the spirit is figuratively absorbed by the body; but in the true philosopher, the spirit is so greatly increased in power that it absorbs into itself and is nourished by man's corporeal body.

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Leaf 19. At the top it reads: "He that comes to know this figure will have knowledge of the Stone." The seated man probably represents Paracelsus. To his right are the words: "I am neither tree nor animal, nor stone nor vegetable, but the Philosopher's Stone, trampled on by men, cast into the fire by my father, and in fire I rejoice." The four words to the left say "In dryness is the Stone." Below the man is the Philosophic Egg containing the words: "It is the end in which the beginning rests." The capital T stands for "Tincture." The text to the right states: "In Stone it is formed, as Gerber writes in his book very learnedly, and possessing so much of its nature that it changes into clear, living water; and it has the power to make folks rich, satisfied, and free from all cares, so they will be always happy if they attain by their wit to the secret."

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Leaf 20. At the top is written: "Rains are made by six stars." Under the inverted man it reads: "Receive new spirit. Arise, for you are asleep." The two sentences about the large figure read: "Remember Mercury, for ashes thou art and unto ashes thou shalt return. I thirst and am dead." Above the seven globes at the left is the admonition: "If he thirst, give him a drink and he shall live." Over the small man is written: "Hermes, the father of philosophers." The curved line of writing to which Hermes points says: "The measure of the drink." Under the central pedestal appears: "The light of my eyes is a lantern to my feet." Below is added: "If the beginning is unknown, the rest is unknown." Above the figure rising from the flames on the right is the statement: "He was resurrected after new Moon," and under the eagle: "Thou shalt not fly further with me."

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Leaf 21. The upper line reads: "Two things and double, but finally one is dissolved into the first and they make sperm." The four capitals. I A A T, are the initial letters of the names of the elements: Ignis, Aer, Aqua, and Terra. The writing under them reads: "Our fire is water; if you can give fire to fire, fire and Mercury will suffice." Along the arm appear the words: "The Art of the Stone is," and on the ribbon: "Swift, brief, bright, and rare." The two lines under the ribbon read: "Every hand is a key, because it was called the herb celandine"; under the Sun: "I am the gift of God " The verse reads: "So that you remain contented in all matters, I must listen attentively. My body [is] naked, clean, and shining, and I run like oil ready to drop, resplendent like bright gold, and then succumb to the plague in its bright and cheerful little chamber [retort]."

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Leaf 22. The verse in the upper left is as follows: "This group is composed of three stones: lunar, solar, and mercurial. In the lunar is white sulphur; in the solar, red sulphur, in the mercurial, both; i.e. white and red, and this is the strength of all instruction." In the bottle at the left are the words: "Dissolving, calcination, sublimation complete the instruction"; and at the base: "Wash, congeal, and coagulate. " Under the central tower is written: "Metallic salts, however, are hidden by one letter"; around the bottom of the red circle: "Dryness, coldness, humidity, heat, and dryness." On the points below are the names of the four elements. The initial, I A A T appear four times with the same meaning as that already given. The three powers of the Philosopher's Stone are symbolized by the heads of the cherubs in the circle in the upper left corner.

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Leaf 23. The writing at the upper left is, in substance, the Lord's Prayer, with the addition of the words Jesus and Mary at the end. The inverted words in the banner read: "Ye can do nothing without me, for God has so promised, saying 'So be it.'" The text under the angel reads: "By this plague he will be damned who knows he is dead, all cold in a black body. And let this be thy first comfort: then he will burn unto calcination. When I have reduced him within this door, know for certain that I shall be blessed if I shall know how to cultivate the garden." The main part of the leaf is devoted to an elaborate symbolic drawing of alchemical equipment, under which are the words: "The furnace of distillation, congealing, rectification, perfection, fixation: quintessence of the Philosophers." By "quintessence" should be understood the "fifth essence" of the most wise.

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Leaf 24. The words at the top read: "I, the bird [the adept], speak into thine ears from the Sun, Moon and Azoth. The work is perfected with little labor." The panel to the left describes the nature of primordial matter and the drink of the Philosophers. The text to the right reads: "This is my beloved Son whom I saw and loved. If he be resurrected, He will remain at home, and in that house the spirit will be the soul and the body; for Mercury may be called the son of the Sun and the Moon." Under the child's figure is added: "If he were not dead, I should not have been his mother. I bore him after death before he was born in the world; under my feet I have what was his, and out of me and my Son and the foundation of my feet the Philosopher's Stone is made." At the lower left the three constituents of the Stone are shown elevated upon a pedestal to signify their dignity.

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Leaf 25. Above the figure of the Queen are three lines stating, in substance, that in the beginning of the book it was written of her that from her maternal breasts she nourished the Sun, and that he who was capable of converting her into Primal matter possessed rare skill. Opposite the Queen's head are the words: "In the highest mountains this water" and "I am the light of the Philosophers." To the left of the Queen is an admonition to strike the sons whom she bears. She calls herself "The mother of the Sun, the sister of the Moon, and the servant and spouse of Mercury." On the right she is made to exclaim: "I cannot be crowned unless these sons of mine become ashes. " The sons are shown directly below. The verse under the Queen continues the alchemical processes, describing the method in which the exudations from the substance should be preserved.

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Leaf 26. This page, which concludes that part of the Hermetic manuscript bearing the symbols of the Secret Work, contains a number of emblems not directly correlated. At the top is the head of the King--the most common of alchemical figures. To the right of the King is an alchemical vessel designated the Hermetic Seal. Below is the head of a ferocious bird, here designated a griffon. To the left of the King is a headless figure elevating a Sun, or spiritual face. This figure is the world, which must be headless, since its spiritual and rational part is not material and consequently, is invisible. Below is a circle unaccompanied by descriptive matter. Directly under the King's head is a vase of flowers, in which rises the golden plant of the Philosophers. At the bottom of the page is additional alchemical equipment, this also being termed a Hermetic Seal.
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