Other translations of the Tablet may have been made during the same period by Plato of Tivoli and Hugh of Santalla, perhaps from different sources. The date of the Kitab Sirr al-Asar is uncertain, though c. Holmyard was the first to find another early arabic version Ruska found a 12th centruy recension claiming to have been dictated by Sergius of Nablus in the Kitab Ustuqus al-Uss al-Thani Second Book of the Elements of Foundation attributed to Jabir. Scholars have seen similarities between this book and the Syriac Book of Treasures written by Job of Odessa 9th century and more interestingly the Greek writings of the bishop Nemesius of Emesa in Syria from the mid fourth century. However though this suggests a possible Syriac source, non of these writings contain the tablet.
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Other translations of the Tablet may have been made during the same period by Plato of Tivoli and Hugh of Santalla, perhaps from different sources. The date of the Kitab Sirr al-Asar is uncertain, though c.
Holmyard was the first to find another early arabic version Ruska found a 12th centruy recension claiming to have been dictated by Sergius of Nablus in the Kitab Ustuqus al-Uss al-Thani Second Book of the Elements of Foundation attributed to Jabir.
Scholars have seen similarities between this book and the Syriac Book of Treasures written by Job of Odessa 9th century and more interestingly the Greek writings of the bishop Nemesius of Emesa in Syria from the mid fourth century. However though this suggests a possible Syriac source, non of these writings contain the tablet. Balinas is usually identified with Apollonius of Tyna, but there is little evidence to connect him with the Kitab Balabiyus, and even if there was,the story implies that Balinas found the tablet rather than wrote it, and the recent discoveries of the dead sea scrolls and the nag hamamdi texts suggest that hiding texts in caves is not impossible, even if we did not have the pyramids before us.
Ruska has suggested an origin further east, and Needham has proposed an origin in China. Holmyard, Davis and Anon all consider that this Tablet may be one of the earliest of all alchemical works we have that survives. In medieval times the emerald table of the Gothic kings of Spain, and the Sacro catino- a dish said to have belonged to the Queen of Sheba, to have been used at the last supper, and to be made of emerald, were made of green glass [Steele and Singer: ].
Translations 0 Balinas mentions the engraving on the table in the hand of Hermes, which says: 1 Truth! That in which there is no doubt! After my entrance into the chamber, where the talisman was set up, I came up to an old man sitting on a golden throne, who was holding an emerald table in one hand.
And behold the following - in Syriac, the primordial language- was written thereon: 1 Here is a true explanation, concerning which there can be no doubt. How wonderful is this work! It is the main principle of the world and is its maintainer.
To make the miracle of the one thing. Again it descends to earth, and takes back the power of the above and the below. All obscurity will flee from you. Georgio Beato 1 This is true and remote from all cover of falsehood 2 Whatever is below is similar to that which is above. Through this the marvels of the work of one thing are procured and perfected.
Its nurse is the earth, the mother of all perfection. For it is able to penetrate and subdue everything subtle and everything crude and hard. And Darkness will fly from thee. With this thou wilt be able to overcome all things and transmute all what is fine and what is coarse.
In this trinity is hidden the wisdom of the whole world. Finish of the Tabula Smaragdina. With this knowledge alone you may work miracles. Earth is its nurse and its guardian. The earth is its nourisher and its receptacle. What is below is like what is above. The miracle of unity is to be attained. The impalbable separated from the palpable. Then it descends to the world combining the power of the upper and the lower.
Shah Hypothetical Chinese Original 1 True, true, with no room for doubt, certain, worthy of all trust. Some texts have adaptatione by adaptation , some have adoptionis by adoption.
Needham quotes Ruska to the effect that sections 3, 12 and 14 are probably late additions op. This descent is "noble when the materials receiving these powers are more like things above in their brightness and transparency; ignoble when the materials are confused and foul, so that the heavenly power is, as it were oppressed. Therefore they say that this is the reason why precious stones more than anything else have wonderful powers" 60 While the "seven kinds of metals have their forms from the seven planets of the lower spheres" Hortulanus: "the stone is divided into two principle parts by the magistry, into a superior part which ascends above and into an inferior part which remains below fixed and clear.
And these two parts moreover are concordant in their virtue since the inferior part is earth which is called nurse and ferment, and the superior part is the spirit which quickens the whole stone and raises it up. Wherfore separation made, and conjunction celebrated, many miracles are effected. Schumaker: "There are corresponding planes in various levels of creation, hence it is safe to draw analogies between macrocosm and microcosm, the mineral kingdom and the human, animal and vegetable kingdoms etc".
Needham: "the whole affirmation looks remarkably like the doctrine that extreme of Yang generates Yin, and vice versa". On 3 Hortulanus: "our stone, which was created by God, was born and came forth from a confused mass, containing in itself all the elements- and hence our stone was born by this single miracle".
Trithemius: "Is it not true that all things flow from one thing, from the goodness of the One, and that whatever is joined to Unity cannot be diverse, but rather fructifies by means of the simplicity and adaptability of the One" "What is born from Unity?
Is it not the ternary? Take note: Unity is unmixed, the binary is compounded, and the ternary is reduced to the simplicity of Unity. I, Trithemius, am not of three minds, but persist in a single integrated mind taking pleasure in the ternary, which gives birth to a marvelous offspring" Bran Burckhardt: "the undivided, invisible Light of the unconditioned One is refracted into multiplicity by the prism of the Spirit". Schumaker: As God is one, all created objects come from one thing, an undifferentiated primal matter.
On 4 Hortulanus: " As one animal naturally generates more animals similar to itself, so the Sun artificially generates Sun by the power of multiplication of Burckhardt: Sun "is the spirit nous , while the moon is the soul psyche ".
On 5 Albertus Magnus: by this Hermes "means the levigatio [making light weight] of the material, raising it to the properties of Air. And why he says the wind carries the material [of the stone] in its belly is that, when the material is placed in an alembic- which is a vessel made like those in which rosewater is prepared- then by evapouration it is rendered subtle and is raised towards the properties of Air And there distills and issues from the mouth of the alembic a watery or oily liquor with all the powers of the elements" In metals the moisture is not separated from the dryness, but is dissolved in it; and being so dissolved, it moves about there as if it had been swallowed by the Earth and were moving about in its bowels.
Hortulanus: "It is plain that wind is air, and air is life, and life is spirit And thus it is necessary that the wind should bear the whole stone From the vapours of winds, which are nothing else but wind in motion, water proceeds, when condensed, and from that water, mixed with earth, all minerals and metals arise".
The substance carried by the wind is "in chemical respect.. In physical respect it is the unborn child that will soon be born". So "Mercury is the wind which receives the sulphur Ripley says "our child shall be born in the air, that is the belly of the wind" [de Jong 7. So also a father, a mother and a nurse have been attributed to the philosophical child As a woman must moderate her diet to avoid miscarriage, "in the same way one must set about philosophical work with moderation".
The Seeds also have to be united. The answer is that not the element, but the whole Earth is meant. Vital breath is the substance of the realm between heaven and earth, it "is also Quicksilver which contains the germ of gold in a liquid state".
The earth is "the body, as an inward reality". On 6 Burckhardt: the word talisman is derived from Telesma. On 7 Hortulanus: The stone is perfect and complete if it is turned into earth "that is if the soul of the stone itself Bacstrom: "Process- First Distillation". Schumaker: if the prime matter is to be used it must be fixed into a substance "capable of being handled".
On 7a Hortulanus: "You will separate, that is, you will dissolve, because solution is separation of parts.. Schumaker "Since the volatile principle is fire -or sometimes, air- stability is produced by its removal.
Hortulanus: "And now he deals with multiplication [of the stone]. The ascending, non fixed, and the earth or ferment. Trithemius: "When the ternary has at last returned to itself it may, by an inner disposition and great delight, ascend from the earth to heaven, thereby receiving both superior and inferior power; thus will it be made powerful and glorious in the clarity of Unity, demonstrate its ability to bring forth every number, and put to flight all obscurity".
Bacstrom: "Last Digestion". The circulation must continue until "it ceases of itself, and the Earth has sucked it all in, when it becomes the black pitchy matter, the Toad [the substances in the alchemical retort and also the lower elements in the body of man -Hall], which denotes complete putrifaction or Death of the compound".
Read, suggests this section describes the use of a kerotakis, in which metals are suspended and subject to the action of gasses released from substances heated in the base, and from their condensation and circulation. On 9 Trithemius: When the ternary has returned to Unity cleansed of all impurities "the mind understands without contradiction all the mysteries of the excellently arranged arcanum". Bacstrom: the black matter becomes White and Red.
The Red "having been carried to perfection, medicinaly and for Metals" is capable of supporting complete mental and physical health, and provides "ample means, in finitum multiplicable to be benevolent and charitable, without any dimunation of our inexhaustable resources, therefore well may it be called the Glory of the whole World". If we pray and have faith "all Obscurity must vanish of course".
Burckhardt: "Thus the light of the Spirit becomes constant.. Bacstrom: "The L. The power increases "in a tenfold ratio, at every multiplication". Burckhardt: "Alchemical fixation is nevertheless more inward Through its union with the spirit bodily consciousness itself becomes a fine and penetrating power". He quotes Jabir "The body becomes a spirit, and takes on The spirit From both bodies a light substance is born , which..
On 11 Burckhardt: "the little world is created according to the prototype of the great world", when the human realises their original nature is the image of God. Schumaker: "The alchemical operation is a paradigm of the creative process. On 13 Hortulanus: "He here teaches in an occult manner the things from which the stone is made. For the stone is three and one, tripple and single, having four natures It is also called the grain of corn because unless it shall have died, it remains itself alone.
Emerald Tablet 101: The Birth of Alchemy
The Egyptian priest and polymath Imhotep had been deified long after his death and therefore assimilated to Thoth in the classical and Hellenistic periods. This interpretation of poorly understood Mycenaean material is disputed, since Hermes Trismegistus is not referenced in any of the copious sources before he emerges in Hellenistic Egypt. Cicero enumerates several deities referred to as "Hermes": a "fourth Mercury Hermes was the son of the Nile, whose name may not be spoken by the Egyptians"; and "the fifth, who is worshiped by the people of Pheneus [in Arcadia ], is said to have killed Argus Panoptes , and for this reason to have fled to Egypt, and to have given the Egyptians their laws and alphabet: he it is whom the Egyptians call Theyt ". Both of these early references in Cicero most ancient Trismegistus material is from the early centuries AD corroborate the view that Thrice-Great Hermes originated in Hellenistic Egypt through syncretism between Greek and Egyptian gods the Hermetica refer most often to Thoth and Amun. This latter tradition has led to the confusion of Hermeticism with Gnosticism , which was developing contemporaneously. Clement of Alexandria was under the impression that the Egyptians had forty-two sacred writings by Hermes, writings that detailed the training of Egyptian priests. The Hermetica is a category of papyri containing spells and initiatory induction procedures.
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As within; so without. As with the universe; so with the soul. While no one in the modern world has seen it, accounts of the Emerald Tablet of Hermes Trismegistus describe a slab of brilliant, crystalline green stone covered with bas-relief Phoenician text. Some believe the tablet holds the secrets of the universe. Considered the original source of hermeticism, gnosticism, western alchemy and science, the tablet is inseparable from the elusive Hermes Trismegistus, an ancient philosopher, healer and sage.
This volume is attributed to "Balinas" or Pseudo-Apollonius of Tyana. He tells his readers that he discovered the text in a vault below a statue of Hermes in Tyana , and that, inside the vault, an old corpse on a golden throne held the emerald tablet. That which is below is like that which is above and that which is above is like that which is below to do the miracles of one only thing And as all things have been and arose from one by the mediation of one: so all things have their birth from this one thing by adaptation. The Sun is its father, the moon its mother, the wind hath carried it in its belly, the earth is its nurse.