vintage esoterics

Hiram E. Butler - Seven Vital Creative Principles, “Solar Biology”, 1887.

This Diagram is a formula expressing the creative energies of the Word, or Logos, the Greek of which is given in the centre of the star. The double triangle expresses the dual relation of the creative forces,—as male and female,—the ancient term of expression being theos-sophy. Their triune expression is, first, Spirit; second, Body; third, Soul. The seven points of the star are expressive of the seven primate creative principles, as named on the respective points; and when man conquers or subjugates these principles to the higher will within himself, he then attains the ultimates which stand expressed against the seven points. These seven creative principles are found to have their solar expression in the seven planets made use of in this system, and the different planetary signs are placed against their appropriate point, or principle, in juxtaposition to the sign of the zodiac in which they find their most natural or perfect expression. These seven points are called the seven vital principles. The body of man, being an epitome of the solar man, or nature, cannot exist without having these seven principles in working order, while he can live without the five serving principles provided he be served by others. The serpent encompassing the triangles is expressive of the circle of eternity, also of the psychic or sex principles of nature, which is active in the work of creation or generation.

Johann Daniel Mylius - Sol Niger, “Philosophia Reformata”, 1622.

Sol Niger (Black Sun) can refer to the first stage of the Alchemical Magnum Opus, the Nigredo (Blackening). In a text ascribed to Marsilio Ficino three Suns are described: Black, White, and Red, corresponding to the three most used Alchemical color stages. Of the Sol Niger he writes: “The body must be dissolved in the subtlest middle air: The body is also dissolved by its own heat and humidity; where the Soul, the middle nature holds the principality in the colour of Blackness all in the glass: which Blackness of Nature the ancient Philosophers called the crows head, or the Black Sun.”

The Black Sun is used to illuminate the Dissolution of the body, a Blackening of Matter, or Putrefaction in Splendor Solis. Sol Niger symbolizes the stage of Psychological Transformation to which the Alchemical processes of Mortification or Putrefaction refer indicates the Death of a Conscious Attitude, resulting in the unfolding of a psychological center in the Self. Edinger writes that such symbols of the extinguished Conscious standpoint as “King, Sun, and Lion refer to the ruling principle of the Conscious Ego and the Power Instinct. At a certain point these must be mortified in order for a new center to emerge.”

Ramon Llull - Tree Of Knowledge, ‘’Arbor Scientiae’’, 1295.

Llull used the well known branching tree in order to make the categorization of knowledge and information easy to understand. Every area of science and computing use a form of classification and categorization based on this method, from genetics to the navigation. Properly used, this branching tree method can not only be used to categorize individual niche areas of knowledge, but map in total, all knowledge itself.

Four Worlds in Kabbalah.

The Four Worlds are the comprehensive categories of Spiritual Realms in Kabbalah in the descending chain of Existence. The concept of “Worlds” denotes the emanation of creative Lifeforce from the Ein Sof Divine Infinite, through progressive, innumerable Tzimtzumim.

Atziluth (אֲצִילוּת), meaning World of Emanation. On this level the light of the Ein Sof (Infinite Divine “Without End”) radiates and is still united with its source. This supernal revelation therefore precludes the Souls and Divine Emanations in Atzilus from sensing their own existence. In Atzilus the 10 Sephiroth emerge in revelation, with Chochma (Wisdom) dominating, all is nullification of Essence to Divinity, not considered created and separate. The last Sephirah Malchut (Kingdom) is the “Divine Speech” of Genesis 1, through which lower Worlds are sustained.

Beri'ah (בְּרִיאָה), meaning World of Creation. On this level is the first concept of Creatio ex Nihilo, however without yet shape or form, as the creations of Beriah sense their own existence, though in nullification of being to Divinity. Beriah is the realm of the “Divine Throne”, denoting the Sephiroth configuration of Atzilus descending into Beriah like a King on a Throne. The Sephirah Binah (Understanding) predominates, Divine intellect. Also called the “Higher Garden of Eden”. The Highest Ranking Angels are in Beriah.

Yetzirah (יְצִירָה), meaning World of Formation. On this level the created being assumes shape and form. The emotional Sephiroth Chesed to Yesod predominate, the souls and angels of Yetzirah worship through Divine emotion and striving, as they sense their distance from the Understanding of Beriah. This ascent and descent channels the Divine vitality down through the Worlds, furthering the Divine purpose. Therefore, in Yetzirah are the main angels, such as Seraphim, denoting their burning consummation in Divine emotion. Also called the “Lower Garden of Eden”.

Assiah (עֲשִׂיָּה), meaning World of Action. On this level the creation is complete, differentiated and particular, due to the concealment and diminution of the Divine vitality. However, it is still on a spiritual level. The angels of Asiyah function on the active level, as the sephirah Malchut (fulfilment in Kingship) predominates. Below spiritual Asiyah is Asiyah Gashmi (“Physical Asiyah”), the final, lowest realm of Existence, our material Universe with all its creations. The last two Sephiroth of Asiyah channel the Lifeforce into Physical Asiyah.