Alchemy Part VII
Magic and Alchemy

May the God-of-Your-Heart bless you and keep you: May the God-of-Your-Heart make his face shine upon you, and be gracious unto you: May the God-of-Your-Heart lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

I want in this ending article to give some ideas as to how alchemical products can be used by persons engaged in spiritual work.

The first would of course be the Astrologer, who in ancient times used the Alchemist products as medicines of the soul to help their clients. Imbalances of energy found in a person's natal chart can be mitigated while strengths enhanced by using authentic oil of metals. Part of Kolisko's capillary dynamic studies showed definitive proof that at specific times of the years the formative forces connected to specific planets is much stronger. Properly prepared crystalline plant salts that have been placed through the proper number of solve and coagula operation can then be used as magnets to draw in the formative force at those times. When crystallized at the height of the event, these small gems will contain the desired formative force, and their clients will have in their possession a spiritual manna for their inner use, not to mention a nifty mineral supplement for their diet. For those clients whom the Astrologer is engaged in a long term work in which the energy of particular astrological configurations is very useful in augmenting the work at specific stages of the timeline, the use of plant salts to capture the energy of specific astrological configurations is very useful.

For those engaged in the work with crystals, undoubtedly the use of authentic alchemical oils obtained from said crystals would be best. These oils when properly prepared are quite harmless and potable. When using these items I find 1 - 7 drops in a glass of wine to work wonders. These oils can also be incorporated into creams for those who, do not wish to ingest them and rubbed on the centers of the body which correspond with their planetary energy. One can also place a healing crystal into a bowl of distilled water and add some crystalline plant salts. These salts will dissolve in a few days. Placing this bowl in an oven set on low (170 F max) will cause the water to evaporate and the salts to crystallize thus attuning them with the original seed crystal energy. These attuned plant salt crystals of course have the benefit that they can be consumed as mineral supplements.

For the herbalist the products that the alchemist makes are far superior to any other manufacture method. Indeed the alchemical way of preparing medicines from plants and minerals is probably the oldest and most potent way known to humanity. Indeed only the art of alchemy has the ability to make a substance which can separate out of a plant its essential oil, within an hour at room temperature. Let me say that again, there is an alchemical menstruum, that is completely plant based, which indeed can be made from any plant put through the alchemical process. This special menstruum will cause the essential oil of a fresh plant immersed into it, to separate from the plant, and depending on the oils density float on top of or sink to the bottom of Our Philosophical Menstrum. The separated oil can clearly be seen, and all of this takes place without the use of any outside heat source. I did the experiment one winter in my basement where the temperature was 65 F. My next series of articles will go more into detail about all of this.

Finally I want to talk about the experiences one can receive when following the Hermetic Sciences paradigm of initiation. In general these things tend to follow ones ascent up the Tree of Life, the opening cycle of dreams are excursions into the four elements of each Sephiroth, going from earth, water, air and finally fire. After this one is initiated into the Sephiroth itself which is a very intense and personal occurrence. Initiations are cyclic affairs and even after one climbs the tree, the entire thing starts over as you go up another rung or spiral into a higher sphere. The work of inner initiation is for the Hermetic Scientist is a journey rather than a destination.

In general the major initiations of the Sephiroth are experienced thus:

Yesod sphere of the Moon: My initiation into Yesod was intense and awe inspiring. I found myself standing atop a mountainous peak in absolute darkness. From below me the full and pregnant moon began to rise, until its entire face was before me, emitting a blinding white light. I could feel waves of energy emanating from the moon, moving through me in rhythmic pulses, and then unexpectedly I began to rise off my feet and move into the center of the moon. The information given to me on the other side, as in all initiations is private, as will yours be.

Hod sphere of Mercury: I found myself in a boat with a single sail on a clam see. Suddenly the sky began to grow dark as thick billowing clouds filled it. The sea got extremely rough throwing the small boat back and forth, as the sail top the mast had now become triangular in shape and the colored black, snapped back and forth in the air with the sound of a cracking whip. I become very afraid and begin to pray, as suddenly as it all began the sea became calm, as a still silence came over everything as the air began to fill with puffy clumps of white ash. I find myself now on a sandy brownish orange colored beach, even the sky has this color, and off in the distance I see a building I walk over to it and enter the school.

Netzach sphere of Venus: Many wonderful and strange creatures where seen, as well as plants of varying species. The exoticness of the environment can not adequately be described by words, or the insight one receives into the process of Nature.

Tiphareth sphere of the Sun: Acceptance and Love where the central themes here. This was I believe the most personal of initiations for me. Because I truly began to understand what unconditional love was, and experienced it. During this initiation the rays of the sun felt like the embrace of an old friend not seen for many years. I remember once driving into New York city and having been in thought about unconditional love when for a moment I saw through the eyes of the Divine. There was no need, rejection, hate, indeed even the trash, and graffiti had their place and where accepted. I then understood the meaning behind the Gnostic words of "split a log and you shall find me, lift a stone and I am there".

Geburah sphere of Mars: One would expect the initiation of mars to be about war but rather this initiation had to do with birth and death, or better put how those two opposites are but one current. The most profound part of the initiation was when I descended into the caverns of Mars' overtone Pluto and learned about the secrets of fermentation and putrefaction two essential steps in the alchemical processes.

Chesed sphere of Jupiter: This initiation took place in a great ornate palace full of crystal windows. The main part of the initiation took place in the akashic library where one could see the books, which housed a record of all universal events stretching in every direction infinitely. I was lead up a winding staircase at the top of which I found a well-known alchemist standing by a lectern with a book on it. He opened the book, the pages of which where a blinding white light, and began to point at specific items on the page as he explained certain correspondences and procedures in the lab to me.

Binah sphere of Saturn: The final initiation in the series was for me concerning an understanding of the Philosophers mercury in all three kingdoms of Nature. True much of the information given in that initiation is still be worked on but it has proven invaluable in my laboratory work.

You of course can not hope to have the same initiation that I did, but yours will run along similar lines of first going through the elements and then the Sephiroth itself. While your Chesed initiation may not involve an alchemist this level of initiation generally takes place in ornate palaces. Hod initiations take place in a building that will remind you of a school. While Netzach initiations will be done in outdoors-natural settings. Thus judging by the environment and setting of ones initiation you can gauge exactly where you are on the path.

Finally just to read about alchemy in general and see some really beautiful alchemical watercolors done by my good friend Adam Mclean please visit Alchemy Web site

copyright 2007 John H. Reid III