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The Secret Book of Artephius

This has been transcribed from 'In Pursuit of Gold' by 'Lapidus'. This treatise describes the entire process of preparing the philosopher's stone. There are three separate operations described here: the preparation of the 'secret fire' (the catalyst or solvent which is used throughout the whole work, without which nothing can be achieved, but which is seldom if ever mentioned in any alchemical treatise), the preparation of 'mercury' (a metallic vapor made from antimony and iron, said to resemble vulgar mercury (Hg) in appearance, necessary in the preparation of the stone) and the preparation of the stone itself.
These operations are not presented in sequence. The reader will note that the language is allusive and recondite, that several names are used to refer to the same thing and that one name is used to refer to several things. This is, however, an exceptionally clear alchemical text.
Artephius is said to have written this in the 12th century. Lapidus doesn't say who translated it (presumably from the Latin).
Comments in [square brackets] are by the transcriber.



Concerning the theurgic or magic sense in which the Egyptian priests exhibited in the Bembine Table of Isis the philosophy of sacrifice, rites, and ceremonies by a system of occult symbols, Athanasius Kircher writes:


Once upon a time, every religion was Janus-faced. It had its exoteric or outward side, serving or exploiting the majority of believers, and its esoteric or inward side, reserved for a few. Christianity had its esoteric side in theosophy, the science of the knowledge of God; Judaism in Kabbalah; Islam in Sufism; Hinduism in the various yogas; Paganism in its Mysteries. These esoterisms were for those with sufficient interest, motivation, and capacity to benefit from them. Entry was through initiation, whereupon, under expert guidance, the elect might embark on the lifelong and demanding quest for reality. That, at least, was the principle, however imperfect it may have been in practice.

It is different today. There is a widespread thirst for a deeper dimension to life than the consumer society can provide, and for a better explanation of its enigmas than exoteric religion or materialistic science has to offer. This thirst accounts for the popular success of books and films that feature Gnostic and occult themes, and of conspiracy theories that claim that things are ordered quite differently – for good or ill – than the public is led to believe. If anyone wants to learn more, the secrets once imparted only to initiates are there on the bookshelves, or the Internet. The doors of the sanctuary are agape, but where are the hierophants, adepts, and sages whom one hoped to find there? Most of us seem to be thrown back on our own resources, lonely travellers among the ruined monuments of ancient mysteries.

The Golden Thread is one such traveller’s offering, and this article is a sampling of it. The book stems from a series of fourteen articles in the New York-based magazine, Lapis: The Inner Meaning of Contemporary Life. Its editor, Ralph White, suggested treating the Western mystery traditions in such a way as to make them not merely historical curiosities, but relevant to his readers. These were typically people with a secure footing in contemporary life, but feeling the call of that “inner meaning” that money and status cannot buy. So I had a dual task: to give them a quick and easy course in the main episodes of Western esoterism, and to show what these have to teach us today.


Posted on 2019/06/19

By Luke Miller / Truth Theory

The 7 Hermetic Principles are a group of simple condensed natural laws that work as a road map for self-liberation. Written by Hermes Trismegistus, a character whose existence blurs the lines between real and mythical.

“Master of all arts and sciences, perfect in all crafts, Ruler of the Three Worlds, Scribe of the Gods, and Keeper of the Books of Life, Thoth Hermes Trismegistus — the Three Times Greatest, the “First Intelligencer” — was regarded by the ancient Egyptians as the embodiment of the Universal Mind. While in all probability there actually existed a great sage and educator by the name of Hermes, it is impossible to extricate the historical man from the mass of legendary accounts which attempt to identify him with the Cosmic Principle of Thought.” Manly P. Hall — The Secret Teachings of All Ages

Hermes is revered as the reincarnation of Tehuti (more commonly known as Thoth), the Kemetic (Ancient Egyptian) God of Writing.

The laws were originally thought to have been passed down by oral tradition. This is when a master teacher verbally shares selected parables and axioms with disciples to preserve the teachings. This was done so only selected people would learn the information, but also for the protection of the teachers and disciples. Up until recent times, people found to be sharing this occult information could end up being burned at the stake for heresy and blasphemy. An example of this is the 16th-century Hermetic Occultist Bruno Giordano, who was burned at the stake for teaching about Hermeticism.

Written copies were made of the teachings in later centuries, with the surviving writings being named the Corpus Hermetica. This is a series of letters from Hermes, which included the 7 Hermetic Principles which are outlined below with short videos that delve deeper into the teachings.


The 7 Hermetic Principles


    The Principle of Mentalism.

“THE ALL IS MIND; The Universe is Mental.”–The Kybalion.


Alchemy – Not Just for the Middle Ages Anymore

Mention alchemy to someone and what do they usually think of? The Middle Ages with old men in some forgotten attic, laboring over bubbling flasks filled with some unknown fluid; or in front of an oven, trying to turn molten lead into gold. These are the images of the alchemist that time, mythology, and prejudicial history have handed down to us.

It is true, that many of the early alchemists were the forerunners of the modern sciences. Physics and chemistry are indebted to these early ‘puffers’ as they are despairingly called, for from their hours of sweat and travail, a host of modern advances came: porcelain, alcohol distillation, acids, salts, and a variety of metallic compounds, are the results of early alchemical experiments.

But if alchemy wasn’t just a foolish waste of time in the search for a means to turn base metals into gold, what was it?


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