A Golden and Blessed Casket of Nature’s Marvels
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Pages (PDF): 157
Publication Date: This translation by Arthur Edward Waite, 1893
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Concerning The Blessed Mystery of the Philosopher’s Stone, Containing the Revelation of the Most Illuminated Egyptian King and Philosopher, Hermes Trismegistus, Translated by our German Hermes, the Noble Beloved Monarch and Philosopher Trismegistus, A. Ph. Theophrastus Paracelsica, With an Excellent Explanation by the Noble and Learned Philosopher, Alexander von Suchten, M.D.; Together with Certain hitherto Unpublished Treatises, By this Author, And Also Other Corollaries of the Same Matter, As Specified in the Preface. Now Published for the Use and benefit of all Sons of the Doctrine of Hermes, By Benedictus Figulus, of Utenhofen.
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We dissolve the living body with Apollo’s fire ---
So that what was before a Stone may become a Spirit.
From the inmost parts of this we extract Gold,
Which, with natal seed, cleanses impure ores from the dross of their mother.
After we have separated the bones, these kindred we then wash with water.
From them is born a Bird, arrayed in various colours, and, being made white, it flies into the air.
So we with new fire paint its wings, and, being coloured, imbue them with its milk:
As for the rest, we feed it with Blood,
Until, full grown, it may bear the fury of Mulciber (i.e., Vulcan-fire).
This Bird, O Gulielmus! The Thrice Great Hermes called his own,
And the whole world has not its like.
O Christ, graciously grant that this blessed long-desired bird be born in our Garden!
........ Hermes, Plato, Aristotle, and the other philosophers, flourishing a different times, who have introduced the Arts, and more especially have explored the secrets of inferior Creation, all these have eagerly sought a means whereby man’s body might be preserved from decay and become endued with immortality. To them it was answered that there is nothing which might deliver the moral body from death; but that there is One Ting which may postpone decay, renew youth, and prolong short human life (as with the patriarchs). For death was laid as a punishment upon our first parents, Adam and Eve, and will never depart from all their descendants. Therefore, the above philosophers, and many others, have sought this One Thing with great labour, and have found that which preserves the human body from corruption, and prolong life, conducts itself, with respect to other elements, as it were like the Heavens; from which thy understood that the Heavens are a substance above the Four Elements.
And just as the Heavens, with respect to the other elements, are held to be the fifth substance (for they are indestructible, stable, and suffer no foreign admixture), so also this One Thing (compared to the forces of our body) is an indestructible essence, drying up all the superfluities of our bodies, and has been philosophically called by the above-mentioned name. It is neither hot and dry like fire, nor cold and moist like water, nor warm and moist like air, nor dry and cold like earth. But it is a skillful, perfect equation of all the Elements, a right commingling of natural forces, a most particular union of spiritual virtues, an indissoluble uniting of body and soul. It is the purest and noblest substance of an indestructible body, which cannot be destroyed nor harmed by the Elements, and is produced by Art. With this Aristotle prepared an apple prolonging life by its scent, when he, 15 days before his death, could neither eat nor drink on account of old age. This spiritual Essence, or One Thing, was revealed from above to Adam, and was greatly desired by the Holy Fathers, this also Hermes and Aristotle called the Truth without Lies, the most sure of all things certain, the Secret of all Secrets.
It is the Last and the Highest Thing to be sought under the Heavens, a wondrous closing and finish of philosophical work, by which are discovered the dews of Heaven and the fastnesses of Earth. What the mouth of man cannot utter is all found in this spirit. As Morienus says: “He who has this has all things, and wants no other aid. For in it are all temporal happiness, bodily health, and earthly fortune. It is the spirit of the fifth substance, a Fount of all Joys (beneath the rays of the moon), the Supporter of Heaven and Earth, the Mover of Sea and Wind, the Outpourer of Rain, upholding the strength of all things, an excellent spirit above Heavenly and other spirits, giving Health, Joy, Peace, Love; driving away Hatred and Sorrow, bringing in Joy, expelling all Evil, quickly healing all Diseases, destroying Poverty and Misery, leading to all good things, giving man his heart’s desire, bringing to the pious earthly honour and long life, but to the wicked who misuse it, Eternal Punishment”.
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