The Tree of Alchemy

Alchemy, the secret art of the land of Khem (Kemet, ancient Egypt), is one of the two oldest sciences know to the world. The other is astrology. The beginnings of both extend back into the obscurity of prehistoric times. According to the earliest records extant, alchemy and astrology were considered as divinely revealed to man so that by their aid he might regain his lost estate.

According to old legends preserved by the Rabbins, the angel at the gate of Eden instructed Adam in the mysteries of the Qabbalah and of alchemy, promising that when the human race had thoroughly mastered the secret wisdom revealed within these inspired arts, the curse of the forbidden fruit would be removed and man might again enter into the Garden of the Lord.

As man took upon himself “coats of skins” (physical bodies) at the time of his fall, so these sacred sciences  were brought by him into the lower worlds incarnated in dense vehicles, through which their spiritual transcendental natures could no longer manifest themselves. Therefore they were considered dead or lost.

Manly P. Hall, The Secret Teachings of all Ages.

Image from a 1577 manuscript, The Leaves of Hermes’ Tree

The serpent sheds its skins to become a flaming sword. The sword cuts through heaven and earth, until it becomes a flaming arrow through the bright. The arrow never hits a target; because although innumerable targets arise, none becomes an object that can stop it.
~ Quintessence of Secret Mercury

Another great piece by David Chaim Smith.

Frater 440.’.
93 93/93

anonymous asked:

hello! i have a question that i've always been curious about but have never actually found and answer for. do you happen to know where the kabbalah bracelet concept came from? i've seen some people argue it comes from ancient texts and others say teenagers appropriated it from hinduism in the sixties. is there any concrete answer or is it just one of those things we don't know for sure?

Great question! I’m assuming you’re referring to the ‘red thread’ bracelet often sold as a ‘Kabbalistic’ accessory, and famously worn by Madonna.

There’s actually an excellent English academic study on this topic! Essentially, both the colour red and the act of tying a string are long-established customs of folk magic around the world… Scarlet threads appear a number of places in the Torah (e.g. tied to the wrist of Tamar’s son Zerah, and hung from Rahav’s window), where Elly Teman argues that “it is connected to situations of birthright, bloodshed, sacrifice, atonement, redemption, and protection, and it appears in situations where boundaries must be asserted between sacred and profane, forsaken and redeemed, those destined to live and those destined to die, those who belong to the Israelite nation and those who do not.” But nowhere in the Hebrew Bible does wearing a red thread appear as a practice, either for protection or for blessing.

The earliest reference I can find to the specific tradition of wearing a red thread as a Jewish magical practice is in the Tosefta, a collection of midrashim from the time of the Talmud, which lists “tying a ribbon to one’s thigh, or a red thread to one’s finger” as practices considered as pagan idolatry, “darkhei Emori” (T. Shabbat 7.1). Several commentators over subsequent centuries reference this passage — the 16th-century Qabbalist Eliyahu de Vidas, for example, quotes it in his book Reshit Hokhma (and thus seemingly registers his agreement that this practice is forbidden). So while on the one hand, rabbinic prohibitions usually are indications of popular practices, it doesn’t seem to have gained much traction in Qabbalistic circles.

It occasionally appears in traditional 19th- and 20th-century descriptions of amulets for childbirth or to protect newborns (an amusing example is that the Hassidic rabbi Yehudah Yudl Rosenberg mentions it in his 1907 book of segulot and amulets, noting that the Tosefta forbids it, but this is in a list of recommended amulets for children, so it’s a wink-wink sort of situation)… In a Hebrew article on the red thread, R. Levi Freund records a few late 19th- and early 20th-century Hassidic rabbis who approved of or practiced the custom for children in their communities, and I found a few other examples from the early 20th century that reference the use of red thread specifically from Rachel’s Tomb (outside Bethlehem) for protection during childbirth or for a newborn (e.g. the testimony of Sister Selma Mayer here, and Teman’s article also cites a few from the 1930s).

But it seems that wearing a red thread generally was not a common practice, whether in or out of Qabbalistic circles. As Teman demonstrates, it seems to have taken off in post-1967 Israel for a variety of socio-political reasons — this is when it began appearing in Jerusalem (at the Western Wall specifically) and became a general symbol of protection, rather than associated with fertility. From there it spread to Jewish communities in North America and elsewhere, and got picked up by the faux-‘Kabbalah’-peddling folks of Madonna et al.

tl;dr: the red thread is a Jewish folk practice, shared with other world cultures, that began in late antiquity, and was traditionally associated in Jewish magic with fertility and protection of children, but became popular in Israel over the last 50 years as a symbol of blessing. It has no association with Qabbala in the classical sense, nor can it be claimed to have been appropriated from Hinduism.

Hope that helps!


The First Path is called the Admirable or the Hidden Intelligence (the
Highest Crown): for it is the Light giving the power of comprehension of that
First Principle which has no beginning; and it is the Primal Glory, for no
created being can attain to its essence.
The Second Path is that of the Illuminating Intelligence: it is the Crown of
Creation, the Splendour of the Unity, equalling it, and it is exalted above
every head, and named by the Kabalists the Second Glory.
The Third Path is the Sanctifying Intelligence, and is the foundation of
Primordial wisdom, which is called the Creator of Faith, and its roots are
AMN; and it is the parent of Faith, from which doth Faith emanate.
The Fourth Path is named the Cohesive or Receptacular Intelligence; and is
so called because it contains all the holy powers, and from it emanate all
the spiritual virtues with the most exalted essences: they emanate one from
the other by the power of the Primordial Emanation. The Highest Crown.)
The Fifth Path is called the Radical Intelligence, because it resembles the
Unity, uniting itself to the Binah, (2) or Intelligence which emanates from
the Primordial depths of Wisdom or Chokmah. (3)
The Sixth Path is called the Mediating Intelligence, because in it are
multiplied the influxes of the emanations, for it causes that influence to
flow into all the reservoirs of the Blessings, with which these themselves are
The Seventh Path is the Occult Intelligence, because it is the Refulgent
Splendour of all the Intellectual virtues which are perceived by the eyes of
intellect, and by the contemplation of faith.
The Eighth Path is called the Absolute or Perfect Intelligence, because it is
the means of the primordial, which has no root by which it can cleave, nor
rest, except in the hidden places of Gedulah, (4) Magnificence, from which
emanates its own proper essence.
The Ninth Path is the Pure Intelligence, so called because it purifies the
Numerations, it proves and corrects the designing of their representation,
and disposes their unity with which they are combined without diminution or
The Tenth Path is the Resplendent Intelligence, because it is exalted above
every head, and sits on the throne of Binah (the Intelligence spoken of in the
Third Path). It illuminates the splendour of all the lights, and causes an
influence to emanate from the Prince of countenances. (5)
The Eleventh Path is the Scintillating Intelligence, because it is the essence
of that curtain which is placed close to the order of the disposition, and this
is a special dignity given to it that it may be able to stand before the Face of
the Cause of Causes.
The Twelfth Path is the Intelligence of Transparency, because it is that
species of Magnificence called Chazchazit, (6) the place whence issues the
vision of those seeing in apparitions. (That is the prophecies by seers in a
The Thirteenth Path is named the Uniting Intelligence, and is so called
because it is itself the Essence of Glory. It is the Consummation of the Truth
of individual spiritual things.
The Fourteenth Path is the Illuminating Intelligence and is so called because
it is that Chashmal (7) which is the founder of the concealed and
fundamental ideas of holiness and of their stages of preparation.
The Fifteenth Path is the Constituting Intelligence, so called because it
constitutes the substance of creation in pure darkness, and men have spoken
of these contemplations; it is that darkness spoken of in Scripture, Job
xxxviii. 9, “and thick darkness a swaddling band for it.”
The Sixteenth Path is the Triumphal or Eternal Intelligence, so called
because it is the pleasure of the Glory, beyond which is no other Glory like
to it, and it is called also the Paradise prepared for the Righteous.
The Seventeenth Path is the Disposing Intelligence, which provides Faith to
the Righteous, and they are clothed with the Holy Spirit by it, and it is
called the Foundation of Excellence in the state of higher things.
The Eighteenth Path is called the Intelligence or House of Influence (by the
greatness of whose abundance the influx of good things upon created beings
is increased), and from its midst the arcana and hidden senses are drawn
forth, which dwell in its shade and which cling to it, from the Cause of all
The Nineteenth Path is the Intelligence of the Secret of all the activities of
the spiritual beings, and is so called because of the influence diffused by it
from the most high and exalted sublime glory.
The Twentieth Path is the Intelligence of Will, and is so called because it is
the means of preparation of all and each created being, and by this
intelligence the existence of the Primordial Wisdom becomes known.
The Twenty-first Path is the Intelligence of Conciliation and Reward, and is
so called because it receives the divine influence which flows into it from its
benediction upon all and each existence.
The Twenty-second Path is the Faithful Intelligence, and is so called because
by it spiritual virtues are increased, and all dwellers on earth are nearly
under its shadow.
The Twenty-third Path is the Stable Intelligence, and it is so called because
it has the virtue of consistency among all numerations.
The Twenty-fourth Path is the Imaginative Intelligence, and it is so called
because it gives a likeness to all the similitudes which are created in like
manner similar to its harmonious elegancies.
The Twenty-fifth Path is the Intelligence of Probation, or Temptation, and is
so called because it is the primary temptation, by which the Creator trieth
all righteous persons.
The Twenty-sixth Path is called the Renewing Intelligence, because the Holy
God renews by it all the changing things which are renewed by the creation
of the world.
The Twenty-seventh Path is the Active or Exciting Intelligence, and it is so
called because through it every existent being receives its spirit and motion.
The Twenty-eighth Path is called the Natural Intelligence; by it is completed
and perfected the nature of all that exists beneath the Sun.
(This Path is omitted by Rittangelius: I presume by inadvertence.)
The Twenty-ninth Path is the Corporeal Intelligence, so called because it
forms every body which is formed in all the worlds, and the reproduction of
The Thirtieth Path is the Collective Intelligence, and Astrologers deduce
from it the judgment of the Stars and celestial signs, and perfect their
science, according to the rules of the motions of the stars.
The Thirty-first Path is the Perpetual Intelligence; but why is it so called?
Because it regulates the motions of the Sun and Moon in their proper order,
each in an orbit convenient for it.
The Thirty-second Path is the Administrative Intelligence, and it is so called
because it directs and associates the motions of the seven planets, directing
all of them in their own proper courses.

The 32 Secret Paths of Solomon is a new examination of the role of Qabbalah in Freemasonry. This book explores how Freemasonry holds certain keys which reveal a completely new perspective to the Qabbalistic science. Qabbalah is mentioned many times in the degrees of Freemasonry, and this book explores why an understanding of Qabbalah is important in order to truly understand Masonic ritual. This book also publishes for the first time gematria correspondences which are found within Masonic ritual, and it demonstrates how Freemasonry holds the keys to understanding a different layout of the Qabbalistic Tree than has ever been published before. This book will be of value to both the new and old student of the Qabbalistic science.

“The word pyramid is popularly supposed to be derived from πῦρ, fire, thus signifying that it is the symbolic representation of the One Divine Flame, the life of every creature.”

~Manly P. Hall

The word pyramid is composed of the three words, Pyr, am (om), and id.
Pyr - The meaning of pyr or pyre is from Latin which is derived from the Greek pura, from pur, ‘fire.’

Am or Om - The word am or om is the sacred syllable used to represent God such as in the ancient Greek name Ammon (Aum-en or Aum-on) that later becomes the last letter in the Greek alphabet, Omega- meaning the “great Om.” As it is said in the Scripture, “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.”(Revelation 3:14)

Id - The last word in pyramid is ‘id’, which means the part of the mind in which innate instinctive impulses and primary processes are manifest.
Therefor if we combine the words Pyr, am, and id, we find the true meaning of the word Pyramid is the “Fire of God in the Mind.”

This fire is inherent in all living creatures on the so below here on earth and also in the heavens in the As Above.

The pyramids allowed the initiates of the Secret Mysteries, such as the Priesthood of the Magi and royal family of the Pharaoh to tap this fire in order to alchemically transform and renew themselves with the sacred fire on the So Below.
These were the holy rites of Initiation of the Pyr-am-ids into the immortal mysteries of the Gnosis of the soul through the divine sacred fire of the universe.

~ Gnostic Warrior


Answers to the questioner…

Zarathustra says: “Sun, what would you be if you did not have those whom you illuminate?” And the Sun replies to him: “Fool! Would you exist if I had not brought you forth?” This is the pride of the rebel whose limited brain distinguishes an I, which it separates from the Self. Ra, the Sun of Nature, is not in you: you are One. God did not create you in opposition to Himself. He emanated you with his breath. He is not in you, because He is the Source, and you are the flux which comes from it; you are One, and your separation is but pride’s dream which would like to make you God. Zarathustra defies the Sun, believe himself Sun, against the Star. But can the fruit of the Sun be other than the Sun? The fruit of the seed is of the same nature as the seed. What difference is there between these extremes if it be not Consciousness? And this renews itself unceasingly until the moment in which the fruit and the seed are one. This alone is the superman. Meanwhile, there is false pride which results from the apparent distance between You and Me. I am teaching you the doctrine of the hour of the dissolution and unification of “seed and fruit.” It is the limiting frame of your faculties which makes you granulate everything in time and space, and separate all into parts, without the connecting soul.

R.A. Schwaller de Lubicz - Nature Word

Image Credit-Johfra Bosschart, Unio Mystica, [Triptych]

Incantations: Does Pronunciation Matter?

Does it matter how you pronounce your Latin, Hebrew, Greek, etc incantations?

Short answer: Fuck no!

Long answer:
Imagine, hypothetically, that English becomes a dead language but also passed down many incantations to the future of occult. What would be the correct pronunciation of those words? American? British? Canadian? Some might say England because the language seems to have originated there.. Okay! North England accent? South? London? What about all the other dialects in the smaller, less urban areas?

I don’t think I have to explain my point any further. Now go intone your incantations and stop overthinking it.

Side-note: I’ve heard that mantra is a bit more tricky in this department. Whether there’s a legitimate reason or just dogma isn’t my area of expertise.

Edit: I’ve been told this can come off as implying Greek and Hebrew are dead languages. Definitely not what I meant.


Ancient Mysteries and Allegories

Top Image:

Symbolism of the Select Master degree in the York Rite. It features a sun as the source of divine intellectual light shining down through the nine arches in the vault illuminating the Tetragrammaton on a golden plate. The engraving is from Cryptic Masonry: A Manual of the Council, by Albert Mackey, 1867.

Bottom Image: Human ribcage and portion of spinal column

The basic story of the rebuilding of the temple of Solomon or the rediscovery of lost wisdom or knowledge that has been hidden, is one that is found in many ancient mystery schools. No matter what the basic form that the story may take, the end result is always the same; the recovery of lost knowledge, the Lost Word or Name of God in the form of the Tetragrammaton.  This Lost Word, Name, or knowledge is always found in “the center” of “some” chamber after a seeker of some type has made the effort to either find it. In the image at the top, the discovery of the Tetragrammaton is found after the seeker has made their way downwards through 9 separate vaults or arches AND the Sun which is Directly Above has shone it’s light straight down through the 9 arches and into the center of the chamber below, illuminating the Tetragrammaton which sits on golden plates on an alter of some kind, or in some stories, the Ark of the Covenant itself. 

The top graphic shows the importance of being able to understand the symbolism inherent in many types of mystery systems. The degrees of initiation speak almost exclusively in allegories.  However, when one takes the time to meditate upon what a story such as the one above means, one can begin to see parallels between the sun, our own enlightenment, and our minds being opened; a deep secret that is buried at the center of our own being; energy in the form of light that flows through the arches, and our spines (Kundalini?); the earth/mountain in which the arches or vaults are located, and our own earthen/physical bodies.

The ancient mysteries have much to teach those who have the courage to seek, the patience to learn, and the discipline and strength to persevere.


The Messianic Redemption.
To begin with there is no Serpent; then one Serpent; lastly two forms of one Serpent, that is a Serpent possessing two complementary energies which when balanced cause its immediate destruction. These two energies, or powers, are called Metatron and Sammael; and in the name of Tetragrammaton they are symbolized by the ∞od and the Vau - the Serpent coiled up or passive and the Serpent erect or active. The first represents the creative energy and the second actual movement or change. These two Serpents are the guardians of those forces which man calls good and evil; they are, as we have already mentioned, symbolized by Yakhin and Boaz, the pillars of Solomon’s Temple, and flow into Kether through the fifty gates of Binah, 50 being the numerical value of KL (lk) which means “all”, or the “understanding of all”. Moses failed to open the fiftieth of these gates had he done so he would have become the Messiah of Israel. When the Messiah does come, the Sabbatic Millenary and will become one nation in the Lord say, this world will be inhabited solely by the Chosen People.  16 17  - that is to will be accomplished; all Israel will be blessed, There is the energy of the Serpent of Genesis, NChSh (Nachash) and the energy of the Brazen Serpent which healed the afflicted Israelites, MShICh (Messiah). Both have the same numerical values, namely 358; consequently when one is subtracted from the other the result is zero - that is deliverance from both good and evil. In order to understand this we will repeat it again: good is a means of balancing out evil, and evil a means of balancing out good. Neither is desirable in itself except in the Material World, which cannot exist without them; equally, the Spiritual World cannot be entered as long as they exist; consequently their adverseness is purely relative to the Spiritual World. Further on in this book we will show that the power of using either is drawn from the same source - Shin, Shekinah, Astral Light, Ether, Electricity, whatever name it may be called by - and to understand the use of this force, yet never to be obsessed by it, is to trample on the head of the Serpent and so re-establish the Shin in the body of Tetragrammaton and formulate the Messiah, the Incarnate Word which when disincarnated caused the Assiatic World to be.

-  J. F. C. FULLER; THE SECRET WISDOM OF THE QABALAH: A Study in Jewish Mystical Thought

Akin to the power of a volcano, Golachab embodies the power of long-repressed rage, sheer explosive force emanating from the darkest regions of the human psyche’s Id.

Meaning the “Burners with Fire”, the Golachab is the most overtly destructive force of all the Qliphoth, or the “evil and impure spirits” of the Jewish and Hebrew-based religions, mysticism, and Kabalah-based beliefs.

Corresponding to the Sephirot Geburah (or Gevurah) of the kabbalistic tree of life, Golachab is represented by the color red, the energy of Mars, the Left Hand of God, the desolation of God, Samael, the great Fire of God, and the number 216; which is 6 times 6 times 6.

The tablets of the covenant that Moses received at Sinai were 6 by 6 by 6 handbreadths, as well as the Torah being given to Moses and Israel from “the Mouth of the Gevurah.”

Yet, amidst all this sheer destructive power lies also the potential for great creative power, for creation and destruction are two sides of the same coin.