Tag Archives: Alchemy

The Collection of an American Gentleman

Apparently Weiser Antiquarian Books has recently added a large number of new arrivals which they describe as being “comprised mainly of moderately priced used books, some out-of-print and some in-print titles at lower than retail price. The subjects & authors in our “new arrivals” list include: Alchemy & Hermetica, Aleister Crowley, Golden Dawn, Magic, Mythology, Paganism, Tarot, and a group of scarce Nelson & Anne White material.” This may contain some works of interest to you.

Liber Nigri Solis

Liber Nigri Solis edited by Victor Voronov is available for pre-order from Theion Publishing in limited standard edition, although the deluxe “Auric” edition is already sold out.

Victor Voronov's Liber Nigri Solis from Theion Publishing

Liber Nigri Solis, edited by Victor Voronov, elaborates the occult, magical and initiatory work of two esoteric orders. Presenting the aeonic history, mythic imagery, and arcane aesthetics of the Black Sun along with its alchemical and astrological aspects and significances, this opus includes a concise though multi-faceted esoteric system in theory and practice suitable for work with the Black Sun on microcosmic, mesocosmic, and macrocosmic levels. It will enable solitary practitioners and occult colleagues alike to cultivate the Gnosis of the Sol Niger through self-initiatory workings, rites, and operations of sinister alchemy.

The reader will be provided with eighteen keys which open the nine Infernal Gates and the nine Gates of Radiant Darkness, ultimately leading to the vision of the Black Sun, which radiates twelve Crooked Paths that cross the nine Thresholds. The text also expounds significant concepts such as the Fivefold Unmanifest or the Grand Chymical Conjunction of the arcane Black Suns that unveils the fiery gates of the Inverse Opus. Beyond researches concerning the sunspot cycle and cosmological considerations pertaining to Indo-Iranian mythology, substantial theoretical and operative material concerning plague-magic and epidemics has been included.

Liber Nigri Solis is a truly controversial grimoire and whether one agrees or not with all of its antinomian gnosis and sinister strategies, the uniqueness, sophistication and otherworldly power of its system is undeniable.

Lavishly illustrated with artwork commissioned especially for this book, Liber Nigri Solis also features a fascinating, elaborate introduction by Dr. Eva Kingsepp of Stockholm University.” [via]

Absinthe

Apollon, qui pleurait le trépas d’Hyacinthe,

Ne voulait pas céder la victoire à la mort.

Il fallait que son âme, adepte de l’essor,

Trouvât pour la beauté une alchimie plus sainte.

Donc, de sa main céleste il épuise, il éreinte

Les dons les plus subtils de la divine Flore.

Leurs corps brisés soupirent une exhalaison d’or

Dont il nous recueillait la goutte de l’Absinthe!

Aux cavernes blotties, aux palais pétillants,

Par un, par deux, buvez ce breuvage d’aimant.

Car c’est un sortilège, un propos de dictame;

Ce vin d’opal pale avortit la misère,

Ouvre de la beauté l’intime sanctuaire

— Ensorcelle mon cœur, extasie mon âme!

Jeanne Le Goulue (Aleister Crowley), The International, XI 10

 

Apollo, who mourned at Hyacinthe’s demise,

Refused to concede this victory to Death.

Much better that the soul, adept in transformation,

Had to find a holy alchemy for beauty.

Thus with his celestial hand he drained and crushed

The subtlest harvest of the garden goddess,

The broken bodies of the herbs yielding a golden essence

From which we measure out our first drop—of Absinthe!

In lowly hovels and in glittering courts,

Alone, in pairs, drink up this potion of desire!

For it is sorcery—as one might say—

When the pale opal wine ends all misery,

Opens beauty’s most intimate sanctuary—

—Bewitches my heart, and exalts my soul in ecstasy!

Practice excerpt from Secret Practices of the Sufi Freemasons

Here’s an excerpt of chapter 1, “Practice,” from Secret Practices of the Sufi Freemasons: The Islamic Teachings at the Heart of Alchemy by Baron Rudolf von Sebottendorff, introduction and commentary by Stephen E Flowers [also], which is offered at the Reading Room courtesy of Inner Traditions.

Baron von Sebottendorff and Stephen E Flowers' Secret Practices of the Sufi Freemasons from Inner Traditions

 

Practice

Islam means “submission,” that is, submission to the will of God. The believer can just commend himself to the will of God simply because it is the will of God. He feels secure and does not ask why this is so and that is different—he fulfills the divine law simply because it is the revealed law of God. He accepts his fate as being immutable and, at the most, attempts by means of prayer to implore for mercy from God when the burden becomes too great for him. But the sign of the true believer will consistently be that he does not ask for release from the burden, but rather for the strength to be able to bear it. “Lead us in the way of those who do not err,” the Prophet prescribes to those who pray.

This faithful condition is what is most worthy to strive after, according to all religious systems. Actually he is also the most happy, it is he who the Prophet values most highly, and he represents this as his only goal–and therefore his religion is called Islam.

Now beside the belief there is something else that makes it equally possible for a person to yield to his fate; it is no longer faith but knowledge—knowledge of the divine laws. The one who knows no longer fulfills this law blindly but rather knowingly. The truly wise one is very near to the believer, but he is superior to the believer.

The Prophet created a very wise institution to open the way to knowledge for everyone who truly seeks it. According to this system in the Qur’an he provided explicit signs, which point the way to knowledge, and which have to reveal the law of creation to someone who gains knowledge from within his own being. The highest form of knowledge will always lead the wise to yield to Divine Providence without complaint—that is, to Islam through knowledge.

In what follows we will concern ourselves with this path. How the Prophet himself came into possession of this knowledge is recounted in the form of the following legend.

Not far from Mecca there lived at the time of Mohammed an aged hermit, Ben Chasi, who was teaching the Prophet. When the lesson was over the hermit gave him a metallic plate upon which were engraved formulas, the meaning of which the then thirty-year-old Prophet had just learned. Soon thereafter the hermit died, but Mohammed kept on teaching the secret of these formulas in the most intimate circles. Abu Bekr, the first calif, inherited the plate and the knowledge, which only spread within a small circle after the death of the Prophet: this is the secret knowledge of the oriental Freemasons.

In order to ensure against the loss of the formulas the Prophet distributed them throughout the Qur’an according to a precise key. The key is known, and the formulas are preserved in the Qur’an, such that the possibility remains for reconstructing the system at any time.

The formulas are preserved in the so-called abbreviated letters, the meaning of which is debated among orientalists as well as different commentators. Some are of the opinion that these letters are signatures. Individual Suras certainly originated under highly variable conditions: the Prophet dictated some, others he recited while friends wrote them down, still others were recorded later from memory. When the Suras were collected, the letters, which indicated the originator of the Sura, would have remained, but now without their meaning.

Some European scholars are of the view that these letters represent notes by the scribe. Thus ALM is supposed to mean: amara li muhamed—“Mohammed commanded me to write.”

Arabic commentators view these letters as holy abbreviations. Thus ALM means: allah latif madshid—“God is good.” Or, as another thinks: ana lahu alamu—“I am the God who knows.”

For others the letters are to be interpreted in a kabalistic sense. Certainly all the Suras in which these letters occur contain definite indications that they have something special to say.

The Arabic language, like all the Semitic languages, does not write the vowels. If one does not read these letters as such, but rather as words, they yield no meaning. For this reason people have been scratching their heads over the meaning of these letters. But in actuality these are the secret formulas concealed in the letters that someone who knows the truth can now easily read and pronounce. All of these formulas are compounds of the vowel A with one or several consonants. 



Number of the sura Name of the sura Formula
2 The Cow alam 

3 Amran’s Family alam 

7 El Araf alamas 

10 Jonah alar 

11 Houd alar

12 Joseph alar

13 Thunder alamar 

14 Abraham alar
15 A-hijr alar 

19 Mary kaha ya as

20 Ta ha ta ha 

26 The Poet tasam

27 The Ant tas

28 The Narration tasam 

29 The Spider alam 

30 The Greeks alam

31 The Wise alam 

32 Adoration alam 

36 Ya sin yas 

38 Sad sa

40 The Believer cham

41 Revelations Well Expounded cham 

42 Consultation cham asak

43 Gold Adornments cham

44 Smoke cham

45 Kneeling cham

46 Al ahqaf cham

50 Qaf ka

68 The Feather na 


822 days   14 different formulas



The formulas are present in twenty-nine Suras. The number of days results in twenty-five lunar months in which three days are missing. On these three days the one who was dedicating himself to these exercises was occupied doing something else, to which we will return later.

 

 

The Hermetic Library Reading Room is an imaginary and speculative future reification of the library in the physical world, a place to experience a cabinet of curiosities offering a confabulation of curation, context and community that engages, archives and encourages a living Western Esoteric Tradition. If you would like to contribute to the Hermetic Library Reading Room, consider supporting the library or contact the librarian.

Secret Practices of the Sufi Freemasons

Secret Practices of the Sufi Freemasons: The Islamic Teachings at the Heart of Alchemy by Baron Rudolf von Sebottendorff, a translation of the 1924 Die Praxis der alten türkischen Freimauerei: Der Schulüssel zum Verstä der Alchemie (written by Baron von Sebottendorff under the pseudonym Theosophisches Verlagshaus) with substantial introduction and commentary by Stephen E Flowers [also] has arrived at the Reading Room courtesy of Inner Traditions.

Baron von Sebottendorff and Stephen E Flowers' Secret Practices of the Sufi Freemasons from Inner Traditions

“Reveals the secret spiritual exercises of the Bektashi Order of Sufis

· Shows how this order, also known as Oriental Freemasonry, preserves the ancient spiritual doctrines forgotten by modern Freemasonry

· Explains how to transform the soul into the alchemical Magnum Opus by combining Masonic grips and the abbreviated letters of the Qur’an

· Includes a detailed biography of Baron von Sebottendorff

Originally published in Germany in 1924, this rare book by Baron Rudolf von Sebottendorff reveals the secret spiritual exercises of the Bektashi Order of Sufis as well as how this order, also known as Oriental Freemasonry, preserves the ancient spiritual doctrines forgotten by modern Freemasonry. Sebottendorff explains how the mysterious abbreviated letters found in the Qur’an represent formulas for perfecting the spirit of the individual. When combined with Masonic hand signs and grips and conducted accordingly to a precise schedule, these formulas incorporate spiritual power into the body and transform the soul from its base state into a noble, godlike state: the Magnum Opus of the medieval alchemists.

Laying out the complete program of spiritual exercises, Sebottendorff explains each abbreviated word-formula in the Qur’an, the hand gestures that go with them, and the exact order and duration for each exercise. Including a detailed biography of Sebottendorff and an examination of alchemy’s Islamic heritage, this book shows how the traditions of Oriental Freemasonry can ennoble the self and lead to higher knowledge.” [via]

 

 

The Hermetic Library Reading Room is an imaginary and speculative future reification of the library in the physical world, a place to experience a cabinet of curiosities offering a confabulation of curation, context and community that engages, archives and encourages a living Western Esoteric Tradition. If you would like to contribute to the Hermetic Library Reading Room, consider supporting the library or contact the librarian.

Make Magic of Your Life

Make Magic of Your Life: Passion, Purpose, and the Power of Desire by Hermetic Library anthology artist T Thorn Coyle [also], from Weiser Books, is available now.

“Do you have the sense that you were born to do something more with your life but you don’t know what that is? Do you long to step into your power and live a life of passion? Do you wish to be of greater service? Are you willing to follow your soul’s desire?

Activate the magical formula known the Four Powers of the Sphinx. These four powers — To Know, To Will, To Dare, and To Keep Silence — help bring about a profound shift in how we view and move through the world. They point us toward our highest purpose and show us what to do, both practically and spiritually, once we’ve found it. They will lead us to a life of magic.

Find your soul’s work. Follow desire. Live a life that matters.” [via]

 

T Thorn Coyle's Make Magic of Your Life from Weiser Books

“For pagans or anyone with magickal leanings everywhere, internationally known pagan and mystic T. Thorn Coyle offers a unique path to make everything in one’s life alive with magic in Make Magic of Your Life.

Coyle shows how to achieve harmony and balance, and find your true purpose by activating the magical Qabalistic formula known as The Four Powers of the Sphinx: to know, to will, to dare, and to keep silent.

Coyle shows readers how to draw on the four powers of the sphinx to discover their “soul’s possibility,” their life’s work, that which they most long to do.

In Make Magic of Your Life, Coyle explains how our deepest failings are often the very things that fuel our life’s work, keep us human and whole, and even make us act as though — like Prometheus — we can steal fire from the Gods.

From the introduction:
“Working magic means showing up with your demons and your divinity, your sorrow and your joy. Alchemy only happens when we are willing to go through the processes of gathering together, refining, pouring, and solidifying. In the end, we have something fine to hold.” [via]

 

The Art of Magick

 

The Art of Magick
(Buckley)

In the midst of ‘Economic madness’…what once ‘was’ is “no more”…
but still….
We are ‘here’.
The Totalitarian Tiptoe continues as always…giving rise to more wars and other unspeakable monstrosities.
Painful to those of us who are aware.
But yet we are aware!
…and what is more…we are aware of our awareness.
This is the magick of the Lucid Dream…
What a time to be alive.
Ah and we are of the divine spark…!
We are gods…all of us.
We are the children of Enki.
Though some think we have the signature of the slave…now is the time to rise above.
Now we can turn the baser metals & transform them into the alchemical gold.
Alchemy
Transformation…
Bliss is only a second away.
What are you waiting for.
Use your breath, for it is spirit.
You will ascend.
This is not a question or a supposition.
It is a fact!
Let us not fear death…for without death there is no rebirth.
When the time has come…The mirror will be put in front of U.
What will you bring to the mirror?
What will you reflect?

Bring hate to the mirror…
The mirror will reflect hate.

Bring love…and ascension is yours.
You are the mirror – and the reflection.

Fear is the mind killer.

Ralph Buckley is a singer/songwriter, musician, magician, and artist who is “originally from Oz (just outside of Seattle…dimensionally speaking).”

Follow Ralph Buckley via
Website
YouTube
iTunes
Soundcloud
and
Anthology Profile

 

Magick, Music and Ritual 6, the Winter 2013 anthology album from the Hermetic Library
Hermetic Library Anthology Project – Magick Music and Ritual 6

 

 

Paul Laffoley’s Alchemy

 

Paul Laffoley’s Alchemy: The Telenomic Process of the Universe from Imperium Pictures

“Artist Paul Laffoley walks us through his painting, Alchemy: The Telenomic Process of the Universe, at the Kent Fine Art gallery in New York City. The exhibition “extrapolates on the mission of the Boston Visionary Cell as it has related to Laffoley’s production over the past forty years.”

From the founding charter of the Boston Visionary Cell:

We … believe that the evocation of the mystical experience by means of symbols, which has functioned as part of the intentioning process throughout the course of human history, is the intended direction of evolution that becomes most expressive through visual art during those periods in history that are characterized by rapid change, e.g., the twentieth century, which has seen a series of movements from the Modern era to the Post-Modern era, finally culminating in the Bauharoque era.” [via]

The Pass-Keys to Alchemy

The Pass-Keys to Alchemy: The Lost Book of Lapidus by Lapidus (David Curwen), from Salamander and Sons, is due to be available directly and via Weiser Antiquarian. It’s a little confusing because, as I write this, although the publisher has stated that the volume is available now, their own shop has it still listed as pre-order and the volume does not appear at Weiser Antiquarian yet. In theory, at least, the volume can now be ordered, or will soon be. This follows the previous work In Pursuit of Gold: Alchemy Today in Theory and Practice [also] which was re-issued, in a revised and expanded edition, in 2011.

Lapidus or David Curwen's The Pass-Keys to Alchemy from Salamander and Sons

“Lost for more than three decades, the companion volume to In Pursuit of Gold has been found.

For decades students of alchemy have believed that In Pursuit of Gold – hailed upon its 1976 publication as a rare work by one of the few practicing laboratory alchemists writing in English during the mid-to-late 20th century – constituted the sole alchemical text penned by the enigmatic alchemist Lapidus. The truth is that Lapidus – real name David Curwen – wrote a second text which, unknown to most, he secreted away with at least one trusted Brother in the Art. Throughout the intervening years this remarkable book, The Pass-Keys to Alchemy, has passed through just a few select and trusted hands.

Each of the chapters of The Pass-Keys to Alchemy details one pass-key to the successful confection of the Philosophers’ Stone, as identified by Lapidus. Drawing upon the writings of Eirenæus Philalethes and Ali Puli, The Hermetic and Alchemical Writings of Paracelsus the Great, Bendictus Figulus’ A Golden and Blessed Casket of Nature’s Marvels, Sir Edward Kelly’s Book of St. Dunstan, and Michael Maier’s Atalanta Fugiens among other canonical texts, this lost alchemical masterpiece includes the kind of profound insights into alchemical theory, laboratory processes and practical methods that only derive from a lifetime of quiet alchemical work.

A rare alchemical gem in print for the first time, The Pass-Keys to Alchemy also includes an introductory essay by Tony Matthews, grandson of Lapidus, and 16 of Theodor de Bry’s masterful engraved emblems from Atalanta Fugiens with accompanying commentary by Lapidus.” [via]