Alchemical Traditions, 1




The Perfect Black

" "


p. 47 black land, black heartland

p. 47

"Egypt, moreover, ... they call by the same name as the black portion {pupil} of the eye, 'Chemia,' and compare it to a heart ... ."

[p. 47, fn. 10 "PLUTARCH, DE Iside et Osiride, 33 ...; for further refs, BAIN, '... New Evidence for the Origins and Etymology of Alchemy?' The World of Ancient Magic ... (Bergen : The Norwegian Institute at Athens, 1999), 205-7."]

" "

"In ... the Cyranides, a Hermetic magico-medical text of Egyptian provenance, ... the esoteric phrase, melanitis ge (black earth), ... was identified with alchemy -- the art of the black land -- ... (chemia)."

pp. 48 & 50-1 pupil of the eye : Ouraios

p. 48

"Kem was also the Egyptian word for the 'pupil of the eye,' ... Plutarch's ... chemia ... not only Egypt's 'black earth' (melaggeion) but also 'the black of the eye' (to melan tou ophthalmou). ... In the Hermetic corpus, one finds a text entitled the Kore Kosmou, ... the 'pupil of the eye of the world'. ...

p. 50

While ... the Pyramid Texts (... refer to h.nw.t jm(y).t jr.t h.r, the 'girl who is in the eye of Horus'), by Graeco-Roman times, a simplified expression, h.nw.t jr. t ('the girl in the eye') ... came to refer to ... the embodiment of the pupil (dfd, but also km) of the

p. 51

eye ... : ... Plutarch's ... Kore ... . ...

In her protective aspect, she was especially epitomized by the apotropaic Uraeus serpent, the ["BRhP -- I"] 'Mistress of the Universe, who came forth from the eye ..., ... from the pupil (dfd) in the eye of Atum {JTM} when Re {R<} arose the first time'."

"BRhP -- I" = R. O. Faulkner (transl.) : "The Bremner Rhind Papyrus -- I". JEA 22 (1936):121-40.

p. 53 iris of the eye

"Columns 6-8 of the Great Amun {JMN} Hymn contain a specific invocation to 'Amun within the Iris' (i,mn=f sw m dfd=f) :

[quoted from Klotz 2006, 81-2] The Ogdoas says : O Amun-Re {JMN-R<}, who hides himself in his iris (dfd)[;] Ba {BL} who illumines by means of his oracular wedjat-eyes, ... who hides himself with his mysterious akh-eyes : ... whose secrets cannot be known.

Now, the word dfd is usually translated as 'pupil,' but Klotz makes [2006, pp. 175-6] a valuable case for translating it as 'iris,' noting that the proper word for pupil in the Ptolemaic period was >im(t) or h.wnw.t. The implications of this distinction are supported by the theology ... in this period, which ... differentiates between the sun ..., and

the hidden ba (soul, psyche) that travels within the sun.

{"To journey within God means ... that it is God who ... makes the spiritual seeker, or saint, travel" (QBChW, p. 116).} {During "the journey within God ... the S.ufi saint ... is moved by God" (BY&N, p. 238).} {"the journey within God is unlimited" ("SJKS.", p. 377, n. 14).}

Amun-Re is thus the hidden soul of the sun who remains invisible, while the colored iris corresponds to the fiery Uraeus goddesses ... ."

Klotz 2006 = David Klotz : Adoration of the Ram : Five Hymns to Amun-Re from the Hibis Temple. New Haven (CT) : Yale Egyptological Seminar.

QB = Bruce Lawrence : The Qur'an : a Biography. Atlantic Bks (imprint of Grove Atlantic), London, 2006.

BY&N = David Shane Elder : Between the Yes and the No : Alternative Ontologies ... and Mysticism ... . Ph.D. diss., Univ of AR, May 2016.

"SJKS." = Leonard Lewisohn : "The Spiritual Journey in Kubrawi S.ufism". In :- Todd Lawson (ed.) : Reason and Inspiration in Islam : Essays in Honour of Hermann Landolt. I. B. Tauris Publ (in association with Institute of Ismaili Studies), London, 2005. pp. 364-79.

p. 54 Empedokles, concerning eyesight

p. 54

"Within the black depths of its ... humour, the eye possessed a hidden fire, an active emanation that, according to Empedocles, was ignited by the goddess Aphrodite, an emission that actively 'met' the rays of light reflected from objects."

{Although one of the epithets of Aphro-dite is Skotia ('darkness')' yet hers thus is understood as the Light which shineth in Darkness, and the Darkness compraehendeth It not (cf. Eu-angelion kata Ioannes 1:5).}

p. 54, fn. 41

"The emission theory is contrasted against the intromission theory."

{The so-called "emission theory" is reasonably applicable to the dream-world, where visual luminance is an emission of consciousness. [written 9 Feb 2018]}

pp. 55-6 perfecting the black

p. 55

"Isis ..., by way of recounting the initiatory chain {parampara}, ... alludes to her own initiation {diks.a} into 'the perfect black' (... teleio melani) {siddha-kali} :

[quoted from Kore Kosmou (Scott 1985, 456-7) : Corpus Hermeticum 4:10:10-5] ... hear the secret doctrine which my forebear Kamephis chanced to hear from Hermes the writer of the records of all things, but I heard it from Kamephis ... when he honoured me with the perfect black (teleio melani) ... .

[quoted from Betz 1992, 131, as modified by Bain 1999, 218] I call on you, Lady Isis, whom Agathos Daimon permitted to rule in the perfect black (teleio melani) [...] Lady Isis, ... many named, many-formed, glorify me ... ."

p. 56

"For Reitzenstein, 'Kamephis' is connected to Amun-Kmeph or -Kneph, who is ... 'he who holds himself hidden in his eye' or 'he who veils himself in his pupil' (though ... it is the iris that the god hides in). However [Thissen 1996, p. 155], ... Kamephis ... equates to ... (k3-mwr=f), 'the bull {homophonous with the hieroglyphic term for 'fucker'} of his mother,' which is linguistically distinct from ... kmeph ..., ... corresponding to ... (km-3t=f) 'he who has completed his moment'."

Scott 1985 = Walter Scott (transl.) : Hermetica ... Ascribed to Hermes Trismegistus. 4 voll. Boston : Shambhala.

Betz 1992 = Hans Dieter Betz (ed.) : The Greek Magical Papyri in Translation, including the Demotic Spells. Univ of Chicago Pr.

Bain 1999 = David Bain : "An Unnoticed Greek Name for Egypt". In :- David R. Jordan; Hugo Montgomery; & Einar Thomassen (edd.) : The World of Ancient Magic : PAPERS FROM THE FIRST INTERNATIONAL SAMSON EITREM SEMINAR ... 1997. Bergen : Norwegian Institute at Athens. pp. 205-26.

Thissen 1996 = H. J. Thissen : "Ein verkannter Gott". ZEITSCHRIFT FU:R PAPYROLOGIE UND EPIGRAPHIK 112:153-60.

p. 57 divine mole

"a man ... revealing the mysterious form of the sun to men ... was transformed into a mole and relegated to the 'black earth' (melaine ge) ... ." (Klotz 2006, p. 182) {cf. "“Stay where thou art, and sit beneath the earth all thy days, so long as the sun is in the sky.” So the rich man's son became a mole" (Ukrainian folktale "Origin of the Mole" in CFT&FT).} {cf. also "So to the Sun went Mr. Mole" (Korean folktale "A Bridegroom for Miss Mole" in UMT&OKT, pp. 50-55).}

{cf. how [Ac^omawi myth ("A&AT" 9)] "Once the Sun fell down from the sky just about sunrise. Mole caught it, and held it up until people got there and helped him to shove it back. ... It was from holding up the Sun that Mole's hands are bent so far back." [Is this the origin-myth of the "Black Hand" Secret Society? (in Serbia : "BHSSS"; S-E"BH")]}

CFT&FT = R. Nisbet Bain : Cossack Fairy Tales and Folk Tales. George G. Harrap & Co.

UMT&OKT = William Elliot Griffis : The Unmannerly Tiger and Other Korean Tales. NY : Thomas Y. Crowell Co., 1911.

"A&AT" = Roland B. Dixon : "Achomawi and Atsugewi Tales". J OF AMER FOLKLORE 22 (1908):159-77. "9. The Mole and the Sun".



p. 62 the 4 color-stages in construction of philosophers's stone


























pp. 62-3 imbuing with hue of wine-dark sea

p. 62

"black (melas) could indicate the dark colour of the sea or of wine, while

{The expression "wine-dark sea" is Homeric : referential not, however, to anything purple, but instead ("HSWD") to the blue tint acquired by wine when chemically combined (as was then customary as a beverage) with limestone.}

white (leukas) could indicate the colour of sand ... . ... .

{White sands (consisting of essentially pure silica) are commonly employed to be melted so as to become colorlessly transparent glass.}

p. 63

... black was said to contain all the colours ... ."

[p. 63, fn. 74 "As with many black inks or dyes, the dark colour is formed from deepening of an existing hue such as red or blue".]

{This is likewise true of some food-concentrates, such as spirulina, which will appear black until mixed into water, then becoming green.}

"HSWD" = "Homer's Sea : Wine-Dark?" NEW YORK TIMES, "Science section", December 20, 1983.[]

{I had been noticing in recent weeks that my adding grape-juice (as sweeterner) to my daily dose (a teaspoonful) of magnesium glycinate [a mineral commonly ingested as nutritional supplement] was always causing the grape-juice to alter its color from purple to blue : magnesium-compounds are bases (alkalis), as likewise is limestone.}

\iosis\ 'empurplement' :-

{Oidi-pous slew his own father at (Nic. Dam. 90F8 -- GR&CB, p. 305) LAPHUSTIon nigh Onchestos (later capital of the Boiotian Foederation, MHH:"B", s.v. "Onchestos").}

{At mt LAPHUSTIos (in Boiotia), "When Athamas was about to sacrifice here Phrixos (Phrixus) and Helle, a ram with his fleece of gold was sent by Zeus to the children, and that on the back of his [Zeus's] ram they made good their escape." (Pausanias : Description of Hellas 9:34:5 -- Th"ThKKh")} {"There is also a statue of Phrixos the son of Athamas carried ashore to the Kolkhians by the ram. Having sacrificed the animal to ... Laphystios, he has cut out the thighs in accordance with Greek custom [not to eat of the sinew that shrank (B-Re>s^iyt 32:32)]" (Pausanias : Description of Hellas 1:24:2 -- Th"ThKKh").}

{As for the fleece in Kolchis, "Simonides in his hymn to Poseidon says it was dyed with the sea-purple." (Scholiast on Euripides' Medea -- "FAP")} {"Homer describes the rams of Polyphemus is having a violet coloured fleece." (Adam Clarke : Commentary on Exodus, 25:5 -- "FAP")} {"Rams there were, well-fed and thick of fleece, fine beasts and large, with wool dark as the violet." (Homeros : Odusseia 9.425 -- "FAP")} {"Jason himself is directly associated with purple by Pindar. After his father had been deposed as king, Jason was spirited away "swathed in purple" and handed over to the centaur Cheiron for rearing" (Pindar : Pindaric Odes 4.113-15 -- "AE&BAEH").}


GR&CB = Jan N. Bremmer : Greek Religion and Culture, the Bible, and the Ancient Near East. Brill, Leiden, 2008.

MHH:"B" = Mogens Herman Hansen : "Boiotia". In :- Mogens Herman Hansen & Thomas Heine Nielsen : An Inventory of Archaic and Classical Poleis. Oxford Univ Pre, 2004. pp. 431-62.

Th"ThKKh" = Theoi, article "Ther--Krios--Khrusomallos".

"FAP" = "The Fleece as Purple".

"AE&BAEH" = "Argonaut Epos and Bronze Age Economic History".

p. 63 kerotakis process to generate alchemic embryo

"Hopkins [1938] describes how the black prima materia was infused with the volatile spirits of metals using the kerotakis process. ...

'Analogously', remarks Fraser [2007], 'the kerotakis could be imagined as the tomb ... and the womb ...'.

Authors such as Comarius liken the metal to a gestating embryo (embryon),

{"The stage of "refining Breath to transmute it into Spirit" constitutes an advanced stage of the alchemical work, in which one's practice progresses from "doing" to "non-doing." The Great Medicine is called Embryo of Sainthood (shengtai)" (FIA, p. 107).}

while the process it undegoes is described as a katabasis or descent into Hades, followed by an anabasis or spiritual ascent (rebirth) ... ."

Hopkins 1938 = Arthur John Hopkins : "A Study of the Kerotakis Process as Given by Zosimos ...". ISIS 29:326-54.

Fraser 2007 = Kyle A. Fraser : "Baptised in Gnosis : the Spiritual Alchemy of Zosimos of Panopolis". DIONYSIUS 25:33-54.

FIA = Wang Mu : Foundations of Internal Alchemy : The Taoist Practice of Neidan. Mountain View (Calif.) : Golden Elixir Press, 2011.

p. 67 correlatives of subtle-body's "rainbow"

"Now, iris is glossed ... as ... the 'lunar rainbow', the 'halo' surrounding a candle ... ."

{candle-flame contemplation for trance-induction [through causal body's causality functioning in >ja> lus ('rainbow body')?]}

pp. 67-8 haloed dark : metallic body {our interpretation via subtle-body manifestations in subtle states-of-consciousness, determined 14 March 2018}

p. 67

"The inner core ... is the seat of the 'soul' ..., 'the 'soul (psyche) is drawn down ...'; for

'by its gravity (baros) it sinks ... and draws ... everything [down] into itself.' (Olumpiodoros 2:4, 39) ...

{analogue of microcosm's sprocess of achieving an.ima with contractile force within macrocosm's Great Attractor?}

p. 68

[quoted from Olumpiodoros 2:4, 38 :]

"Now the contracting aspect,

{covenant-contract of Kaula vrata?}

contracting into its density,

{shrinking one' field-of-awareness into proportion of an.u (size of quark)?}

is salvaged from the hidden depths of the body (idion somaton).

{is taken out from the Abyss amid the Spiyrowt?}


{by retaining awareness whilst entring hypnopompia?}

the liquid essence,

{the mutable nature of hypn-agogic visions?}

one draws out the nature of lead,

{manifesting as one's dream-body?}

as the divine Zosimos says,

{divinized as an Earthly Immortal?}

based on true gnosis of divinity.

{derived from the Akas`ik Record?}

And ["the soul"] no longer manifests itself in

the unseen world (aoraton kosmon).

{realm of dreamless sleep?}

Rather, the soul manifests itself in

another body, a body of silver;

{aitheric body as source of "silvern cord" connecting with the astral body?}

and in silver it is

the fiery blood, or gold."

{substance which is course of "golden cord" connecting with the mental body?}

pp. 68-9 *\iso-\ & *\isoti-\ {cf. \Isatis\, name of a antique site located in antient Karmania/Germania.} and other proto-Indo-Germanic root-words

p. 68

"In the xanthosis or yellowing process, the soul abides in the heart of silver like the yolk of an egg, where it forms its ... flame-coloured blood. Here the fiery yet fusible core matures like an embryo into the ios, the violet-coloured essence of gold (ios chrysos). ...

The ios or iosis ... is polysemantic word meaning not only 'violet' (the flower and the colour) but also '... arrow; ... verdigris' as well as 'one' (monos). The term is cognate with

{Inaccurately stated! There are at least three etymologically distinct words (all three coalescing in Attic \io-\) repraesented here : viz., *\wya[l]-\ (source of Latin \vjol-\ [\violet\]; *\isa-\ (source of Samskrta \is.a\ 'arrow'); and *\wir[id]-\ (source of Latin \virid-\ 'green' [\verdigris\]). The Attic \-osi-\ extension is (by well-known principles of historical etymology in the respective Hellenic dialects) derived from proto-Hellenic *\-oti-\.}

p. 69

the Latin ... vis, 'virulence ...' ... ."

{This is yet a fourth distinct root-word : Latin \vis\ (with makron vowel) 'force' is quite distinct from Latin \vir-\ (with mikron vowel) 'green'.}

{The author is content to cite the Attic writers' muddled confusion of originally distinct words, without properly reproving them for unsound deductions erroneously applied by them to resultantly aberrant symbolism in their highly (and misinformedly) conjectural "alchemy".}

p. 70 chemeia & the flower-of-fire

[transl. from Zosimos : Biblos Alethes ... ton Dunameion Sabaoth ('True Book of ... the Powerful Hosts [Strong's 6635 \S.aba>o^wt\ 'hosts, armies']')] "For those who liberate and purify the divine soul from its elemental bindings and, above all, separate the divine spirit from its fusion with flesh, ... alchemy (chemeias) is born from the creation of the cosmos (kosmopoii:as). Just as the celestial sun is the flower of fire ... -- so too can copper become a flower ["of fire"] ..., becoming a terrestrial sun, a king upon the earth as the sun is king in heaven."

p. 71 according to Iamblikhos, each embodied soul is to perform its own demi-ourgia ('public work'); therewith, propaideia as praeliminary to alchemic apotheosis, the latter achieved by way of transmuting one's outlook on the purpose-and-function of the cosmos (material universe) [Parallelism between Iamblikhos and Maha-bharata together with Brahma-vaivartta Puran.a : noted 14 March 2018.]

[quoted from Shaw 1995, p. 15] "Iamblichus, like Plato, placed the the demonic within the embodied soul, the only chaos untamed by the Demiurge. Yet, ... while Plato's Demiurge gave to each soul a spark of himself (Tim. 41C), Iamblichus understood this to mean that each soul had the responsibility to perform its own demiurgy, that is to say, its own theurgy. The task of every soul was to partake in divine mimesis by creating a cosmos out of the initial chaos of its own embodiment."

{\HAS-\ ('laughter'), embodied as ap-saras goddess Hasini, is Pauran.ik cognate-aequivalent to the Platonic \Kha[h]os\ ('yawning') < *\HAS-\. This hath an immortal counterpart [= Demi-ourgos] in Khaga-udara (a "sky-goer" god-aspect of vidya-dhara), father of (MBh, "Vana Parvan" 132 -- PE, s.v. "As.t.avakra 1)", pp. 64b-65a) As.t.a-vakra (for whom Hasini danced : MBh, "Anus`ana Parvan" 19:45 -- PE, s.v. "Hasini"); and a mortal counterpart [= soul] in Asita (rendred crooked by Rambha, queen of deva-loka : BVP -- PE, s.v. "As.t.avakra 5)", p. 65b)."}

"views of the cosmos ... as a deceptive, corrupting prison from which the soul should be liberated ... actually reflect the Platonic ... (propaideia, the 'formative' or preparatory' teachings) ... tailored to the stages through which the soul must progress in order to be prepared for the mysteries.

{This specious limitation might (in account of its irreality) be repraesented by the disguise adopted by "queen of the north" Uttara (MBh, "Anus`ana Parvan" 19 -- PE, s.v. "As.t.avakra 4)"); but genuine freedom might be repraesented by queen Radha who refurbished the body of Devala (BVP -- PE, s.v. "As.t.avakra 5)", p. 65b).}

The soul reflects and perceives the cosmos according to the current composition of its own nature : either as a limit to its freedom or as a vehicle to its freedom."

{Because the material universe is at all times divinely controlled, therefore is it always perfectly beneficent, and therefore is a means of achieving transcendental attainments.}


Shaw 1995 = Gregory Shaw : Theurgy and the Soul : the Neoplatonism of Iamblichus. University Park (PA) : PA State Univ Pr.

MBh = Maha-bharata Itihasa.

BVP = Brahma-vaivartta Puran.a.

PE = Vettam Mani : Puran.ic Encyclopaedia. Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi, 1975.

pp. 71-2 transmuting one's atitude toward goddess Hekate (<*\se-S`ATA\ '100 times') : from repugnance to admiration [Parallelism between Iamblikhos and Devi-bhagavata Upa-puran.a : noted 8 April 2018]

p. 71

"The Chaldean Hecate {Sumerian Eres`-ki-gal} encountered human souls in forms always adequate to

p. 72

their internal condition :

for those sunk in the body she was necessary; for the erring, demonic temptation; for the renegade, a curse;

{This could be repraesented by the dismal circumstances prevailing amongst the deva-s before they came to the attention of goddess Jagat-ambika ('the universe's mother'). (DBhP 7 -- PE, s.v. "Durgama", p. 254b)}

for those who recalled their divine nature, a guide; for those who returned home, grace" (quoted from Lewy 1978, p. 365).

{This could be repraesented by the beneficial circumstances prevailing amongst the deva-s after they came to the attention of goddess, who thus became known as S`ATA-aks.a ('100-eyed'). (DBhP 7 -- PE, s.v. "Durgama", pp. 254b-255a)}

DBhP = Devi-bhagavata Upa-puran.a.

p. 72 extensions of divinity

"hieratic Neoplatonists such as Iamblichus held that matter and nature were derived from ... the divine principle; the modalities of nature were extensions of divinity. Thus, the phenomenal cosmos for Iamblichus is ... the visible portion of the entire spectrum of divine activity.

Most importantly, the soul's dual nature -- the mean term between mortal and immortal -- gave it the privileged position of being able to participate in the creation {i.e., as co-creator (or, if feminine, as co-creatrix)} and salvation of the cosmos." (Shaw 1995, p. 16)

Shaw 1995 = Gregory Shaw : Theurgy and the Soul. University Park (PA) : PA State Univ Pr.

pp. 72-4 as described by the Timaios : krater as bowl for blending, within : itself, the Same and the Other

p. 72

"Timaeus {Timaios} of Locri {Lokroi} describes the great mixing bowl (krater [Latin \krater\, Hellenic \krater\]) located in the depths of the underworld that mirrors a celestial ... cosmogonic krater. The krater located at the depths ... is associated ... with

a vast system of subterranean rivers converging in a giant crater,

{cf. the rivers flowing into Ginnunga-gap (according to the Edda)}

and ... with a series of craters, hollows and

p. 73

chasms filled with volcanic fire. [Kingsley 1995, pp. 133-48] ...

This krater is the alchemical vessel of the demiurge, who creates not only the four elements, but --

by mixing the eternal and the transient together in a great mixing-bowl -- the world-soul :

{This "mixing" of the aeternal together with the transient is intended to suggest the aitheric world's linkage between the subtle worlds and the material world (parallel with the aitheric body's linkage between subtle bodies and material body).}

[Timaios 36A, 41D] Between the being which is indivisible and always remains the same and the being which is transient and divisible in bodies,

he blended a third form of being compounded out of ... the Same and the Other. ...

Thus ..., ... once more into the ... (krater), in which he had blended and mixed the soul (psyche) of the universe (pantos), he poured the residue of the previous material, mixing it it somewhat the same manner, yet no longer with a uniform ... purity."

[Timaios 41D-E] "From the purest, the demiurge creates the band of fixed stars ..., and from te remains, he creates the concentric layers of the seven planets ... . These seven layers form the ontological hierarchy of astral fatality ... ."

"mastery of fatality can

p. 74

only come from the outermost layer ... (the 'circle of the same' governing the'circle of the other')".

Kingsley 1995 = Peter Kingsley : Ancient Philosophy, Mystery, Magic : Empedocles and Pythagorean Tradition. Oxford : Clarendon Pr.

p. 74 noos & krater

"In a tractate from the Corpus Hermeticum ..., we meet a mixing vessel 'filled with nous'. ... here it should be emphasized that the Hermetic nous is not merely the intellect or mind in the common sense, but rather the faculty or sense with which a being knows god. ...

[quoted from Corpus Hermeticum IV.4, modified after Scott, pp. 150-1] He ["the Hermetic god"] filled a great krater with nous, and sent it down to earth; he appointed a herald and commanded the hearts of men : 'baptise yourself in this krater ..., and trust that you will ascend to him who sent the krater down'.

Those who heeded the herald baptised themselves in nous, participating in gnosis; having received nous, they become perfect men (teleioi anthropoi)."

{In the Eu-angelion according to Philippos, this is to blend the hues together into a perfect white (obverse of the "perfect black") : "54 The teacher went to Levi's dyeworks; he took seventy-two colors ["khroma"], threw them into the vat, and when he took them out, they were white." (GPhJMM)}

GPhJMM = Jean-Yves Leloup : The Gospel of Philip : Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and the Gnosis of Sacred Union. Simon & Schuster, 2004.

{Because Strong's 3878 \LEWIY\ is cognate with Hellenic \Lai[w]os\ (name of the father of Oidi-pod-) and with Latinate \obLIVIon\ 'forgetfulness', therefore this white dye-blend ought to match-up with the Puthagorean quaffing (by the soul postmortem) from the "Pool of Forgetfulness", and with the Bon religion's elemental "White Water" : thus, contrasting against the dark dye ("perfect black") matching-up with the Puthagorean quaffing (by the soul postmortem) from the "Pool of Memory", and with the Taoist religion's elemental "Black Water".}

p. 76 sciences taught to mortals by the Bney >lohiym (Book of H.nowk, in R. H. Charles : Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament , pp. 191-3; cited in Fraser 2004, p. 127)


science taught by mal>ak

<azaz->el {Strong's 5810 'strong'}

"all colouring tinctures"

Baraqiy->al {'levin'}


Kowkab->el {'star'}

"the constellations"

<araqiy->el {Strong's 6207 'gnaw'}

"the signs of the earth" {geo-manteia}

S^amsiy->el {cf. <arabiy 'sun'}

"the signs of the sun"

Fraser 2004 = Kyle A. Fraser : "Zosimos of Panopolis and the Book of Enoch : Alchemy as Forbidden Knowledge". ARIES 4 (2004).2:125-47.

p. 77 perfected souls take refuge in Poim-andres ('shepherd-of-man')

Comments Zosimos :

... you perfect your soul ..., then, realising the natural tinctures (baphika),

spit on matter,

{In Taoist ritual, holy water is applied to persons for blessing them, by the priest's spitting the holy water into the face of the person being thus blessed.}

take refuge in Poimandres ... .

... This ... reference to 'taking refuge in Poimandres' ... alludes to the Hermetic figure that is described ... as the 'mind (noos) of the divine sovereign'. This designation ... in Egyptian theology ... refers to the mind of Re{<}." (Kingsley 1993, pp. 4-8)

Kingsley 1993 = Peter Kingsley : "Poimandres : ... the Origins of the Hermetica". J OF THE WARBURG & COURTAULD INSTITUTES 56 (1993):1-24.

p. 78 sleep & dream by Zosimos

"Zosimos then falls asleep and beholds a ... priest at ... the altar

which has fifteen steps leading up to it ... . ...

{These are, of course, the 15 steps (commemorated by the 15 "Psalms of Ascent") leading upward to the Holy of Holies in the Temple of King S^lomoh, at Yruw-s^alem.}

The priest then tells of being sacrificed in a manner ... of ... murder ... : 'for one came headlong in the morning, ... with a sword, and tearing me asunder according to the rigour of harmony' (diastasas kata systasin harmonias).

{Because the setting of this scene is very definitely in the Temple of King S^lomoh, therefore it is very evident that the unnamed murdered priest must surely be H.iyram (Strong's 2438) "Abiff" (apparently for \>abiyw\, an apocopated form of Strong's 35 \>biyownah\ 'caper berry') : with allusion to that fruit (instead of the grape of the Catholic-Orthodox) as hieratic eucharist of the primitive "Ebionite" (Strong's 34 \>ebyown\ 'pauper') form of Christianity. [written 14 Apr 2018] (The Ebionite eucharist for the laity may have been the lentil, as it was recorded for a certain Gnostic denomination.)}

Upon waking, Zosimos reflects to himself ... . ...

Falling asleep again, Zosimos beholds the krater itself :

it is filled with people in boiling water ('... yet living') ... .

{Cf. [myth of the Blang tribe of Yun-nan ] "Gumiya ... swam across rivers boiling ... like water in a pot" (SCTY, p. 90). The sun melted the wax holding together Gumiya's hat (SCTY, p. 89).}

{Perhaps this "boiling water" is aequivalent to the effervescent Wai-Ora ('water living') of god Tane, which divine water is reputed, in Maori lore, to rejuvenate the souls of the dead who died in their senility. Tane is sun-god, and sun-god Helios melted the wax holding, onto Ikaros, the feathers. (A feather is commonly inserted, as ornament, into a hat-band.)}

The remainder ... is ... the successive alchemical transformations of the ... priest, who appears as

a man of copper (chalkanthropos),

a man of silver (argyranthropos) and finally as a man of gold (chrysanthropos)."

{Golden is the spirit-cord fastened into the mental body; silvern is the spirit-cord fastened into the astral body; thus, of copper must be the spirit-cord fastened into the spirit-cord fastened into the aitheric body. [written 14 Apr 2018]}

SCTY = Lucien Miller (ed.) : South of the Clouds : Tales from Yunnan. Univ of WA Pr, Seattle, 1994.

{According to "the Arawete` (Viveiros de Castro 1992) ... souls of the dead are cooked in effervescent water -- boiling without fire -- in order to become gods and find celestial spouses." ("SB&PB", p. 304)} {"At Futuna, or Horne Island, these waters of life appear as Vaiola, and are situated in the spirit world. Here the spirits of the dead come to restore youth and beauty." ("MPA", p. 106)}

Viveiros de Castro 1992 = Eduardo Batalha Viveiros de Castro : From the Enemy's Point of View : Humanity and Divinity in an Amazonian Society. Univ of Chicago Pr.

"SB&PB" = Isabella Lepri : "Souls, Bodies and Powerful Beings : Animism ... in an Amazonian Society". In :- Graham Harvey (ed.) : Handbook of Contemporary Animism. Acumen Publ, Durham; ISD, Bristol, 2013. pp. 294-306.,_23.htm

"MPA" = Elsdon Best : "Maori Personifications : Anthropogeny, Solar Myths and Phallic Symbolism, as Exemplified in the Demiurgic Concepts of Tane and Tiki". J OF THE POLYNESIAN SOC 32 (1923):53-69.,_No._127/Maori_personifications._Anthropogeny,_solar_myths_and_phallic_symbolism:_as_exemplified_in_the_demiurgic_concepts_of_Tane_and_Tiki,_by_Elsdon_Best,_p_53-69/p1

pp. 79-80 theosis of the cosmos

p. 79

"Eastern Orthodox theologians ... speak not just of the soul's deification but also of the theosis of the cosmos [Lossky 1976] ... .

p. 80

Ultimately, the process requires the human soul itself to become a perfecting spiritual tincture ... so that it may participate in the divine activity of the cosmic baphika, thus redeeming ..., potentially, all embodied souls."

Lossky 1976 = Vladimir Lossky : The Mystical Theology of the Eastern Church. Crestwood (NY) : St Vladimir's Seminary Pr.

pp. 80-1 antecedents of the Hermetika

p. 80

"genuine origins of the Hermetica and alchemical traditions in pharaonic civilisation ... have been examined and confirmed by scholars such as ... Iversen [1984, passim] ... and Kingsley. As to alchemy as Hermetic techne, ... should

p. 81

be noted ... the Leiden and Stockholm papyri, ... discovered in Upper Egypt. These texts, in addition to ... a ... 'proto-chemical' aspect, also bear a distinct ... overlap with the ritual or theurgic material contained in the Greek Magical Papyri ... ."

Iversen 1984 = Erick Iversen : Egyptian and Hermetic Doctrine. Copenhagen : Museum Tusculanum Pr.

pp. 81-2 language-translating as hermeneutics

p. 81

"the Greek word for 'interpreter' or 'translator' -- hermeneus -- was a derivative from the god-name Hermes. ... In short, ...

p. 82

we have ... the role of Hermetism as a tradition of translation."

pp. 82-3, 87-8 telistic art

p. 82

"In 1990, ... French Egyptologist Philippe Derchain published a study of the texts of the h.wt nbw (... 'mansion/enclosure of gold') from the Temple of Hathor at Dendera ... .

p. 83

Derchain showed how ... the goldmaker ... functioned ... Egyptian temple cult in the production of living statues."

p. 87

"Hieratic Neoplatonists such as Proclus {Proklos} referred to statue animation as the telestic art (telistike, literally the ["art of"} 'perfection' ...) ... . ... According to the rituals of the telestic art, statues, symbols, and sages alike became infused with purifying divine presence ... . ...

p. 88

According to the Corpus Hermeticum, such images have miraculous powers by virtue of their divine presence. Statues are not only 'animated and filled with sense and spirit' (statuas animatas sensu et spiritu plenas), they also complete great deeds, such as 'foreknowledge, prediction by lots, dreams, and divine possession' ... ."

Derchain 1990 = Philippe Derchain : "L'Atelier des Orfe`vres a`` Dendera bet les origines de l'alchimie". CHRONIQUE D'E'GYPTE 129:219-42.

p. 90 a writing by Apollonios of Tuane

"In a text known as The Book of Seven Statues, the Persian alchemist Jaldaki ... provides a translation and commentary upon a lost Greek original attributed to the ancient Neopythagorean, Apollonius of Tyana. Significy,antl this lost text of Apollonius is the very same source from which the ... Tabula smaragdina (the Emerald Tablet of Hermes Trismegistus) was ... derived".


Aaron Cheak (ed.) : Alchemical Traditions from Antiquity to the Avant-Garde. Numen Bks, Melbourne (Victoria), 2013.