Inner alchemy archives - Alchemy and its effects

Back to alchemy forum page . Back to Inner alchemy archive.


Date: Sun, 19 Jan 1997 03:41:16 -0800
From: Victoria GaVoian


A.M.W.House,

Thank you for answering my questions as to alchemy and its
effects. I have questions in regards to your answer in regard to what
to expect to acheve in relationship to alchemy:

You had said:
>An old adage in alchemy is about evolution:"Nature unaided fails"

Is not life motivated to descend into form to partake in life's labors,
to somehow compensate life, the creator of life?
How does nature fail?
Perhaps being so new, I have completely misunderstood, can you please
elaborate.

>"All things are in a state of ever becoming", these axioms are telling
>us about a perception of growth. The power to accelerate nature
>beyond where we found her.

What if we accelerated nature only to find ourselves in that great
beyond? And why accelerate nature? Isn't there a natural life-
unfoldment? Could it be that the laws of nature, subject
to the slow rythm of time, may be germinating on collective scale,
completing its process. Just as we?

When you speak of nature, are you refering to the nature of man or
nature as in the world?

the ideal in alchemy and the control of this world and the other (astral
world) is the ne plus ultra for an alchemist.

This control over the astral world, what would you do, if you could?

Does Alchemy have its own set of initiatory obligations or practices
that one must achieve?



Date: Sun, 19 Jan 1997 21:47:57 -0800
From: Anthony M. House

Hello Victoria,

Motivation may not be the term to use for descending to three
dimentional space/time. Evolution is movement, growth, both of which
occur without motivation. Involution, which is the separation from the
NO-thing occurs by necessity. Qabalists insist that where there is no
time/space there is no evolution. Nothing can be done there as there is
no 'there' in which to do anything...To understand this it's necessary
to involute to a dimentional space/time where action and reaction can
take place. Here, now, something can be done.

> How does nature fail?

Nature is the natural world of physical space/time. The elements of
nature are guided and formulated from invisible layers of inner
non-space. Time does exist there, in the sense we know here, yet time
can pass there as seconds equalling hours, minutes equalling days, and
so on..Nature fails to produce perfection such as gold, or the
philosophers stone. Unaided, nature as consciousness desires the help of
man to bring her progeny to the ultimate in this space/time.

> Perhaps being so new, I have completely misunderstood, can you please
> elaborate.

Elaboration is the goal of alchemists....

> >"All things are in a state of ever becoming", these axioms are telling
> >us about a perception of growth. The power to accelerate nature
> >beyond where we found her.
> What if we accelerated nature only to find ourselves in that great
> beyond? And why accelerate nature? Isn't there a natural life-
> unfoldment? Could it be that the laws of nature, subject
> to the slow rythm of time, may be germinating on collective scale,
> completing its process. Just as we?

In order to accelerate natures progeny we must know what her intention
is for whatsoever thing she has produced. Taking up where she has left
her offspring. If we understand her purpose, which she cannot complete
by herself, we will achieve the perfection of the world and of nature,
discovering the great inner beyond of the NO-thing. Unfoldment of
natural things is a slow process which alchemists have seen as requiring
an acceleration to go faster toward unity or oneness.

> When you speak of nature, are you refering to the nature of man or
> nature as in the world?

The power of reproduction and growth in this space/time, equal to
lifeforce in this world = nature.

> > the ideal in alchemy and the control of this world and the other (astral
> world) is the ne plus ultra for an alchemist.

This control over the astral world, what would you do, if you could?
I would perfect all that is below the perfection of gold and that which
the philosophers stone can reorganize. Ultimately, the powers of inner
worlds before atoms would be at my evocation. They would be the engine
of my vehicle/soul/body ready to my command and capable of productions
at my will...

> Does Alchemy have its own set of initiatory obligations or practices
> that one must achieve?

Each develops to each ones own capability. There are no obligations or
practices that anyone MUST do. However, to achieve the high goal of
making the P. Stone does require the discipline to initiate and sustain
the effort to obtain the wisdom. There are five steps to wisdom:
1.superstition. 2.belief. 3.knowledge. 4.understanding. 5.wisdom..
Through knowledge, comes understanding, understanding properly applied
leads to wisdom...I hope these words help you to understand...;-)

House.




Date: Mon, 20 Jan 1997 01:48:00 -0500 (EST)
From: Edward DeVito

Dear Mike

(Pleased you like the name) I've found an interesting side effect of this
name is that it helps me to mind my head. (Chuckles).

Your approach was not aggressive, at all, but rather, stimulating, good sir
(Ardent = Andrew, is my given, middle name). You opened a door into a great
hall, where the royal banners are white, for the pure hearts who bore them
there.

Your approach was not aggressive, at all, but rather, stimulating, good sir
(Ardent = Andrew, is my given, middle name). A door is opened into a great
hall, where the royal banners are white, for the pure hearts who bore them
there. I struggled with words to validate what is beautifully sustained in
the illustration of the lamas, tsawa'i, or 'root', lama, and, lama dampa
(best, holy or real lama). I once formulated this exchange as, "the criteria
of 'divine' perception, which has something to do with realization." And, was
left trying to explain what I meant. Not so pretty; so, kept coming back to
the "active symbols & signs".

This is good stuff. Thanks!

Keeper
(Edward DeVito, Portland Oregon)



Date: Wed, 22 Jan 1997 17:14:46 -0600 (CST)
From: George Leake

>From: Mike Dickman [edited for brevity]
>Externally "anyone who has completed a three year, three month, three day
>retreat" is technically a lama, that is to say, 'someone who has fully
>activated his potentiality'... The ego-filled horrors of this in occedens for
>the moment need not be gone into...

Isn't it a tip-off when you end up reading more about some personality
rather than actual teaching?

>Certainly enough, this scenario (in the real sense of that term) is to be
>found in each and every initiatic system, and of this there can be no doubt.
>However I cannot but return to the fast-descending stick...

Or the light of the diamond of discrimination cutting through? (nice
touch, Mike; I wish I could find a way to actualize this stick in certain
email exchanges)

>PS - Forgive me if the tone seems aggressive: please read it, rather, as
>ardent/intense.
>Getting oneself checked out, and subtly reoriented wherever one is more, or
>less, out of line seems to me to be fundamental
>God knows, I don't claim to know the first thing about anything at all!

Not to worry. I find this thoroughly enjoyable myself.

I suppose we can apply this to other lessons in life and alchemy...

George Leake



Date: Wed, 22 Jan 1997 23:40:01 -1000
From: Gary Whiting

> Alchemy, i.e... Why they feel the need to include its influence in their
> lives. What they expect to achieve, and how it is to live under its
> influence.

I am new to this, and hope these observations are taken with the
respect for our mutual endeavors that they reflect. I think there has
been a lot of discussion of the "gold" in these pages, that aspect of
the work that we hope to achieve, and relatively little talk of what is
"worked", the lead. It seems to me that the initial step is to "stay
with" those aspects of psyche that are difficult, confounding,
demoralizing, depressing, i.e. "leaden". "The unconscious is always the
fly in the ointment", as Jung said somewhere; that side that is in
"shadow", anything but perfect, perverse and out of control and chaotic.
Yet this is a fecund chaos, if consciousness can "encompass" it (the
"vas" as central to the Art), work to bring order. But the lead is the
starting point (potentially toxic and overpowering, poisonous); only by
acknowledging and experiencing the ways that we are a mess (massa
confusa) are we are in the middle of the work. That's what in us needs
working.

And it goes deeper than that: I have had recurring dreams where I
have somehow lost everything; am in a new town, knowing no one, no job,
no skills, no family, totally bereft and destitute, starting with
nothing and just existing, with a deep ache and sense of loss and
alienation. I wake up wondering what this signifies: my life is full,
with a strong marriage and children and friends and successful
profession--why this sense of emptiness and despair that is so poignant,
even powerful: enduring something of immense weight. Lately in reading
Mysterium Coniunctionis, came across the section in which the lapis is
referred to as the "orphan", the "son of the widow", something alone and
solitary, "solitaire". The spark of light is "trapped in the stone",
something holy and pure that has been thrown into this dark realm of a
world and forced to "work" from within this horrific 3-D prison to bring
it to the likesame purity, if possible. But as Holderin and Nietzsche
knew: "Where danger is, so also is salvation": without the very real
risk of light being overwhelmed by corrupt nature, there would be no
motivation, no need to do the work. Jung says that depression prompts
"an involuntary introversion of attention"--it is often clear to me that
depressive symptoms prompt deeper work on life for people, though their
need to seek psychological help is initially seen as anything but a
blessing. James Hillman is aware of this "symptoms as harbingers"
aspect. I respect alchemy for recognizing and committing itself to
working on the world, for engendering an idealistic sense that there is
something that "calls out" to be rescued (the King, drowning in the
sea). Jung was aware that alchemy represented a continuation of the
redemptive work of Christ, turned now outwards, now that our souls have
been saved. Yet it seems essential to me that we are alive to the
anguish of existence (the "dukkha" or suffering that Buddhism teaches)
to be doing the work. The lure of gold itself corrupts the work; this
is the dragon that always guards the treasure, the last temptation.

Thank you for your reading and attention; these issues are very
sensitive and close to me--careful comments appreciated.

Best wishes,

Gary



Date: Thu, 09 Jan 1997 14:13:47 -0800
From: Victoria GaVoian


In regards to letter by M. Dickman: "There are not different kinds of
mind," as old Huang–po so kindly pointed out..." -

Could he please elaborate on what aspect of the mind he is referring
to, or his view of what the mind is, in which he is referring.

Also to fellow alchemists,
I am new, and would like to know more about their relationship to inner
Alchemy, i.e... Why they feel the need to include its influence in their
lives. What they expect to achieve, and how it is to live under its
influence. I know this is a lot to ask, but pretend we're in a typing
chat room and someone gives you the "one" and only one, brief and
golden opportunity to answer simply as possible...

Best regards

Victoria GaVoian



Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 13:13:04 -0500 (EST)
From: Dan Denlinger

Victoria,

Thank you for your pointed and profitable question.
To respond to your question on what one might expect to achieve through a
relationship to inner alchemy, I expect to develop a neural net which will
allow tangible consciousness of subtle states and aspects of life.
As to why: why do seeds sprout and grow given proper conditions?
How? In the beginning we must regulate and clarify our life and mind.

Blessings

Dan


Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 20:02:21 -0800
From: Anthony M. House

> From: Victoria GaVoian
> I am new, and would like to know more about their relationship to inner
> Alchemy, i.e... Why they feel the need to include its influence in their
> lives.

In brief:
The effects of alchemy are felt everyday Victoria as personal growth and
learning is pursued. Even when these are not pursued the effect is also
felt. In the realm of depth the psychology of influence is to act as a
conduit for the Grandfather (universe) and to earth the powers of nature
through her study.

>What they expect to achieve.

An old adage in alchemy is about evolution:"Nature unaided fails" or,
"All things are in a state of ever becoming", these axioms are telling
us about a perception of growth. The power to accelerate nature beyond
where we found her. For instance to achieve a 'stone' from a plant is a
process that she (nature) cannot do alone. Gaining insights into the
natural world and the non-physical world is the ideal in alchemy and the
control of this world and the other (astral world) is the ne plus ultra
for an alchemist.

>and how it is to live under its influence.

There is a dual influence active here. The previously stated goals
activate an inner contact with the Grandfather (universe) that sends you
to night school. At this celestial university you will learn the
elementary lessons of reading and writing there first, such as dream
practice and activating your senses in this astral kingdom. Further
lessons involve a catalyst from our world which comes from our
laboratories and the Great Work of obtaining the Philosophers Stone. The
use of the Stone of the Wise gives more permanent effects on the astral
world which allows longer contact with eternity. Time/space is
transcended there, and hours become days, days, weeks...etc. With each
new initiation we will obtain new powers of the many levels of the
qabala tree as we ascend to unity...

Peace to you and yours...

A.M.W. House



Date: Fri, 10 Jan 97 16:38:28 UT
From: Mike Dickman

To Victoria GaVoian,

Thank you for taking me up, and please - in advance - excuse any regrettable
but possible inevitable 'psycho-waffle'!
"Mind" as referred to here - and particularly as Huang-po meant it, although
the definition I'm paraphrasing actually comes from the Tibetan Dzogchen
tradition - might tentatively be defined as "a primordial and unborn
awareness, empty in essence and radiant by nature, whose energy is
all-pervading".
As far as I can make out, as regards a prima materia, there is nothing prior
to this.
Before I make a real fool of myself on this score, however, I'd like to shut
up.

You also ask 'Why alchemy?' - for my own part it is, if you like, the
occidental coming-together of the various things I study and teach... Inasmuch
as it has managed to remain outside the manipulations of religions and
politics (and - worse yet! - religious politics) to a large degree, I have the
- unfounded, perhaps, I grant you - feeling that it really does contain the
very quintessence of the da-da-dah! "western tradition" in its purest and most
supra-sectarian forms.

Respectfully,

Mike



Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 17:44:23 -0500 (EST)
From: Edward DeVito

Mike Dickman, responding to Victoria GaVoian, states:

<< I grant you - feeling that it (Alchemy) really does contain the very
quintessence of the da-da-dah! "western tradition" in its purest and most
supra-sectarian forms.>>

Can there be any doubt that this is the case? My investigations in Western
Magic have revealed the sibling relationship with Alchemical Thought that
seems to have its roots in Egyptian Tradition as either passed down through,
percieved by, or mytholigized in the later, Hellenistic Hermetica. The core
"tool" - elemental -symbolism is the same, and though emphasis varies, I
often see them as versions of the "Raja Yoga" of the West.


Date: Mon, 13 Jan 97 17:01:23 UT
From: Mike Dickman

Edward deVito, hi!

No. I was just being cautious is all.

One enormous difference with the orient, though, is the question of 'lineage'
- that is to say, of direct, untrammelled, unbroken and un-tampered-with
transmission and, more importantly, 'critical evaluation' from master to
student down the ever-lengthening line... Particularly over the last
thousand-odd years...

... Not that the teacher can 'create', as it were, enlightenment in the pupil,
but that a damn good whack with a stick occasionally might have saved many of
us and many others a hell of a lot of wasted time...

... Just thinking through my fingers...

Love and all,
Mike


Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 20:47:38 -0800
From: Victoria GaVoian

Thank you for responding to my question regarding Alchemy and its
effects along with what one might expect to achieve through a
relationship to inner alchemy. You had said that you "expect to
develop a neural net which will allow tangible consciousness of
subtle states and aspects of life." In reference to "neural states,"
why neural? In regards to "consciousness of subtle states," where
are you including the aspect of awareness.
As to why: why do seeds sprout and grow given proper conditions? How? In
the beginning we must regulate and clarify our life and mind.


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 02:35:20 -0500 (EST)
From: Keeper (Edward DeVito)

Dear Mike,

In a message dated 97-01-13 13:39:15 EST, you write:

<< One enormous difference with the orient, though, is the question of
'lineage' - that is to say, of direct, untrammelled, unbroken and
un-tampered-with transmission and, more importantly, 'critical evaluation'
from master to student down the ever-lengthening line... Particularly over
the last thousand-odd years... >>

I will hazard that the Western Tradition has its "Line" as well. It is well
established and quite alive on the inside. We know we have grasped it when
the appropriate "symbols & signs" become activated. Everything is "just
right." The bridge then, to students, is still by word of mouth (bearing
witness).

Love & Light!

Edward


Date: Fri, 17 Jan 97 21:24:35 UT
From: Mike Dickman

Keeper (intriguing name, that... I like it immensely),

You say

I will hazard that the Western Tradition has its "Line" as well... We know we
have grasped it when the appropriate "symbols & signs" become activated.
Everything is "just right

I would certainly agree that lineage is connected with as (and only as) its
internal symbolism begins to take on real life and meaning in the experience
of the practitioner, and that the presence of some smiling (or severe-looking,
for that matter) gentlemen with know-it-all eyes and questionable reputations
is not of the essence...

The Tibetan (for example) terms lama (bla.ma), tsawa'i lama (rtsa.ba'i bla .
ma) and lama dampa (bla.ma dam.pa) - (forgive me: half my life is spent
translating this stuff) - express this rather interestingly...

Externally "anyone who has completed a three year, three month, three day
retreat" is technically a lama, that is to say, 'someone who has fully
activated his potentiality'... The ego-filled horrors of this in occedens for
the moment need not be gone into...

The tsawa'i, or 'root', lama is, in the words of 'Jamyang Ky'entse, Chokyi
Lodro, (1893-1956), "one's own enlightenment projected before one in the form
of one's main teacher". The tsawa'i lama is that lama who finally gets the
disciple to recognise his own mind as identical with primordial awareness as
the root and source of 'all this', 'all that is'...

... Which recognition, and its subsequent enactment as compassion following a
genuine stabilisation of this 'view', is referred to as the lama dampa, the
'best, holy, or real' lama, the existence and pre-emenence of which it is the
tsawa'i lama's only and sacred business to point out...

Certainly enough, this scenario (in the real sense of that term) is to be
found in each and every initiatic system, and of this there can be no doubt.
However I cannot but return to the fast-descending stick...

'"Some of us," said Lin-ch'i to his chief disciple (who's name now escapes
me), "prefer the shout and some prefer the stick. Which do you prefer?"
"I would not choose," the disciple wisely replied.
"Yes, but if you had to," Lin-ch'i pressed him.
The disciple shouted.

And Lin-ch'i hit him...'

We're not talking about fools.

The bridge then, to students, is still by word of mouth (bearing
witness)

... Mmm... Yeah...

Mind your head,
Mike

PS - Forgive me if the tone seems aggressive: please read it, rather, as
ardent/intense.
Getting oneself checked out, and subtly reoriented wherever one is more, or
less, out of line seems to me to be fundamental
God knows, I don't claim to know the first thing about anything at all!


Date: Sat, 18 Jan 1997 16:05:30 -0500 (EST)
From: Richard Patz

>From: Mike Dickman
>The tsawa'i, or 'root', lama is, in the words of 'Jamyang Ky'entse, Chokyi
>Lodro, (1893-1956), "one's own enlightenment projected before one in the form
>of one's main teacher". The tsawa'i lama is that lama who finally gets the
>disciple to recognise his own mind as identical with primordial awareness as
>the root and source of 'all this', 'all that is'...

Would you suggest then that alchemical transmutation is our own
transmutation projected before us in the same fashion with the same
subsequent recognition of ourselves being identical with prima materia?

>...Which recognition, and its subsequent enactment as compassion following a
>genuine stabilisation of this 'view', is referred to as the lama dampa, the
>'best, holy, or real' lama, the existence and pre-emenence of which it is the
>tsawa'i lama's only and sacred business to point out...

This stabilisation of view - is this what is meant by the Wish-fulfilling
Gem? (I am making the jump from stabilisation to stone).

Richard Patz