Hermaphrodite Child of the Sun and Moon X
Translated by Mike Brenner. Copyright Mike Brenner 1997. Permission given
to freely copy this, as long as this copyright remains attached.
EXPLANATION OF FIGURE 10
There are several ways to say the same three things.
The raven (symbolizing our dark earth) (1) sits on the ground though quite flight-capable,
(2) stares straight into the sun hungering for, gobbling up, and sealing in the vibrations of
the astral north-wind, (3) builds up enough internal heat to metamorphose into a gorgeous peacock.
The darkened Hermaphrodite Child (1) putrefying in the shadows
(2) uses Midnight Fire (3) to overcome the cold light of its former life.
Saturnian lead must (1) melt, (2) cook, and (3) turn to tin.
The dove (1) can sometimes go back, but (2) once the raven drinks in this fire, (3) the ashes
can never be unburned.
The fermenting metallic sperm is like dough. (1) Let it finish rising on its own before adding
any flavors. (2) Heat the oven as gently as the gurgling of a brooding hen. (3) The Tincture
is ready when a golden crust appears on the loaf, if we can patiently conquer our damned
ignorance and compulsion to hurry the process.
Your first task is
Controlling this faculty:
Turn our virgin Earth
Into Milk, but
Be Gentle and take as long
As a pregnancy.
Then the raven is born,
Later classified as the peacock,
In 5 months, lilies bloom
When you decide to open the door for him.
EXPLANATION OF PARAGRAPH 10
The most difficult part of the Work is exactly controlling the intensity of the expansion and
contraction of the esoteric Fire. Mistakes are guaranteed without precise understanding.
The word Alchemy denotes both Chemistry and Physics, so pay careful attention to both.
The expanding-contracting Fire is actually two non-interacting, freely circulating fires
corresponding to the elemental attributes dry-moist. These two fires balance each other out
so when one rests the other works.
Gracefully expanding and contracting both fires will prevent dissolving the moist liquid Fire
too abruptly or coagulating the dry mystical solid Fire too harshly.
Right from the start of the Work, continually emphasize this gentleness in processing the White
solid into the mystical Fire, so that neither overwhelms or ruins the other.
This takes time, so Paragraph 10 makes the beautiful analogy to the nine months it takes
to bear a child. This also happens to be the time it takes to manufacture the Elixir and for the
other operation that creates the Stone.
At the end of this time period the raven is at the door. The Raven is deprived of its body or
its darkness after lasting 40 days.
The peacock colors appear in the half-solid liquid gases, which become fully solid along the way,
as they change into the Moon.
Evaporate the raven's body (our Liquid Mercury), then resolidify, meaning kill it.
That is how the swan is born, swimming in the sea of glass,
Hardening into the crystal Stone of the first order.
This paragraph follows Flamell in keeping the fiery king sealed for 150 days, though
Bernardus Trevisanus says 130 days, to produce the first Stone.
Now it whitens
And has the power to
Transmute lead, tin, copper,
Into the finest Silver,
EXPLANATION OF CANON 10
Initially, Saturn produces 4 kinds of forms and 4 corresponding colors: (1) Saturnial black,
(2) Jovial gray, (3) Mercurial or Lunar white, and (4) Martial or Venusian yellow. Then Solar
red evolves followed by all the mixed hues of nature and contrivance.
When the various principles complete the final darkness of their putrefaction, the mixture
or composite is called Laton. The Laton crystallizes through Azoth (Mercurial Acid) and augments
and solidifies into the white Tincture.
After completing the cycle of putrifying and cleaning the Stone and fermenting it, there is nothing
left to worry about, except to hope God preserves it from violation.
Only the White Stone can turn the black Laton Stone to yellow. And only the Yellow can turn it to Red.
Make (1) the Black into White, (2) the White into Yellow, (3) the Yellow into Red, then you have Mastery.
The Black Stone is like Winter, the White like Spring, the Yellow like Summer, and the Red like Autumn.
Pay exceptional attention not to take the White Stone from the fire too early, before it is completely
solid and precipitated. When it is done, it shatters all by itself, and from then on we use its shards.
The first Stone hardly transmutes anything. However, after the Astral Mercury resurrects it,
and joins it with as much acid as it will soak up, then one part of this Tincture will transmute
many thousand parts of incomplete metals into Silver.
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.