The Alchemy web site on Levity.com
Hermaphrodite Child of the Sun and Moon VTranslated by Mike Brenner. Copyright Mike Brenner 1997. Permission given to freely copy this, as long as this copyright remains attached.
Back to Hermaphrodite Child of the Sun and Moon.
EXPLANATION OF FIGURE 5
This triangle depicts the philosophical alembic or oven. Inside the
triangle are the hexagon, representing the Mystical Substance as a
conjunction of four equal and intertwined elements, and the sun and
the moon, representing the wedding of Passion (CAPRICUM) and
conscience (BE-JAH). Outside the triangle are salt, sulphur, and
mercury, the three principles of the Stone, orbiting in perfect
balance. These principles appear to the adept as an ephemeral spirit
or a diaphanous dragon, transmuted from the murky bodies of the
mundane world into the clarified bodies of the the paradisiacal
world. Afterwards, White Mercury will appear above, Red Sulphur in
the middle, and Black Salt at the bottom.
Gently (without damage) unify these pure Principles by science and art,
and you hit the target dead center.
This Figure clearly shows
The orbiting of the four Elements:
Turn Air, Fire, Water, and Earth
into Water through our Fire.
Then make that Water into Earth.
That completes the Work.
In other words, separate
the Air, Fire, Water, and Earth,
and unify them once more.
Do it gently or all is wasted,
And all the work and all the reward are lost.
The Crown sits in the point of the Earth.
EXPLANATION OF PARAGRAPH 5
Alchemy teaches of three kinds of circulations occuring in three
worlds: the outer Earthly, the Paradisiacal, and finally, the
Celestial World. Mass concentrates in the outer World where the
gross, corporal elements, Water and Earth, predominate. The subtle
elements, Air and Fire, predominate in the paradisiacal and celestial
In the first World, the Earth is drowned in Noah's flood of sin and
bottoms out into the ground. In the next World, the Earth is
evaporated by the warm breeze, and the rainbow appears. In the third
world, the Earth is purified by fire, crystallized, and coagulated.
In each World, the Elements procede along their orbit: Water turns
into Air, Air into Fire, Fire into Earth. The same order is also used
for Reduction. Eventually this cycle repeats. The first World has
seven circulations of Water. The second seven circulations of Air.
The third seven circulations of Fire. The Latin scholar Morienus, who
moved to Jerusalem from Rome, said that you find what you seek when
you change the Water into Air, the Air into Fire, and the Fire into
Earth. Ebner [sic] agrees with Hermes, saying: It come into Its full power
when It turns to Earth, which must occur gradually and without
damage, or else the Work is lost.
Seek after reason and intelligence,
And do not look down on me,
Though I am vile and small,
Nothing else in the entire world
Contains the true Tincture,
Since I have the subtle and pure Mercury,
Settled, without turbulence,
Completely liquid, yet white and clear.
EXPLANATION OF CANON 5
Zealous Adepts can see further and sharper, because they penetrate
through to the center, to the esoteric meaning of things. Thus they
perceive the effects of Spirit manifesting in the physical. The One
Substance, in which God and nature placed such a deep mystery,
appears to be a vile, contemptible thing. Yet, the Tincture or Stone
of the Philosophers can be made out of nothing else in nature. The
One Substance houses, attracts, and produces the absolutely purest
spirit of Mercury. In It, the wise find all they seek.
If you have problems understanding these alchemical texts, Adam McLean now provides a study course entitled How to read alchemical texts : a guide for the perplexed.
Works of Nicolas Flamel
Works of George Ripley
Works of Sendivogius
Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum
Emerald tablet of Hermes
Texts from Musaeum Hermeticum
Spanish alchemical texts
German alchemical texts
French alchemical texts
Russian alchemical texts
Italian alchemical texts