Opus Vitae

Throughout the course of my life, I was completely unaware of the gentle guidance of some unseen hand. It is only now, on my 60th birthday, that I am beginning to understand where the guides have brought the seeker. This place of gnosis through catharsis - like a curtain of ignorance being drawn aside. I will never understand why this wisdom was revealed to me so I can only be eternally grateful in the humblest of ways. As the Universe continues to reveal its ways to me it will be recorded here for posterity in my notes. Ultimately, this is for my sister and my grandchildren. My sister because she has been on the same path as I and my grandchildren because I trust they will find their own paths to knowledge and wisdom. May they find the same awe and mystery in the Universe as I have and may the same unseen hand guide them to these paths towards enlightenment.

Why Alchemy, and what is all this about?

Why Alchemy? Because Alchemy is the end result of a lifelong search for truth to the great mysteries. Steve Jobs once said something to the effect that you can't connect the dots looking forward but you can only connect them looking backward. When I look back on my life I can indeed see how the dots connect. Somehow, every aspect of what I'd been interested in is connected. Every book, every area of interest brought me here - brought me to the Alchemical and Hermetic corpus. I am integrating these subjects into this research not because I'm using them as examples but because these areas of study were revealed to me by some unseen hand over the course of my sixty years on this planet. There is no logic to this so don't attempt to look for it. There is only my personal experience. At this point in my research, what draws me to Alchemy is its connection with all I have been given or exposed to over the years. The synchronicities and connections are astonishing! Sometimes I actually have to stop thinking about it because my head literally hurts!

 

I hope to demonstrate and explain my epiphany within the three major sections of this web page. Alchemical Processes attempts to explain the mechanisms that propagate the Alchemical transformation. Alchemical Symbolism attempts to explain the myriad symbolism of Alchemy and finally, Breadcrumbs demonstrates the rather eclectic areas of interest over the years that eventually lead me to Alchemy. I use Alchemical drawings and illustrations in a desperate attempt to explain what is going on as Alchemy is all about metaphor and allegory. These are transpositions of my notes taken over the past few weeks, (and the myriad areas of study that span fifty years of my life) and will continue to expand as I attempt to gain an understanding of the Alchemical and Hermetic corpus.

 

What exactly is Alchemy?

This is a tough one because Alchemy covers a lot of ground. It is a two-fold process that occurs in the alchemical lab and within the Alchemist performing the operations. The three phases and seven or so operations are designed, in the laboratory experiments, to break down substances to their constituent components, purify these components, and finally recombine them to create a newer more potent product. As the Alchemist works through these processes, he or she is applying them metaphorically within on a deeply spiritual level. This is demonstrated on a more superficial level through the transmutation of turning common metals like lead into gold. The Alchemical maxim, As Above, so Below, as Within, so Without, is the beginning of a deep and profound understanding of the soul, the cosmos, and the subsequently, God. The Universe unfolds before the Alchemist as he or she is humbled by its enlightenment. I am so excited and deeply humbled by what has been placed before me. Why the Universe has chosen me is perhaps, a deeper mystery! I only hope that I can present this information in a way that it makes some kind of sense and inspires a personal journey for my precious grandchildren and my beloved sister.