PARACHEMICA
Volume 1: Number 1 Spring 1976





Editorial
Glass of Antimony

Parachemica Contents


PARACHEMICA


is a quarterly publication of Paracelsus Research Society,(Australia), a non-profit institution devoted exclusively to research in the hermetic and related fields.

Editor: D. E. Foster

Manuscripts, comments, questions, etc. are invited to be considered for publication. These should be sent, type-written, double-spaced, in duplicate to
The Editor,
Parachemica
Melbourne, Australia

Subscriptions to the Sister American and Swiss publications are available to students as follows:
PARACHEMY (U.S.A.) Quarterly through the P.R.S. (Australia).
QUINTA ESSENTIA (Switzerland) quarterly for German speaking students, SWITZERLAND.

The Cover: A 17th Century woodcut showing a spiritual pilgrim leaving the ordinary world and looking through the 'window of eternity' into the world of timeless order.


EDITORIAL

The aims and objectives of this journal are principally directed towards students of the PRS in Australia in an attempt to aid the student in integrating the triune concepts of Parachemy, Astrocyclic Pulsations (Astrology) and Qabalah within himself and in relation to the world in which he lives and works.

We shall try to include material which is of practical value in regard to the laboratory as well as material which is stimulating intellectually and spiritually.

Equal emphasis will be placed as far as possible on the practical laboratory work, on astrocyclic pulsations and on the QBL, because advancement to any degree in understanding of any one of these subjects depends on an equal advancement in the other two. Students, all being different, usually find an initial attraction to one of the three, sometimes to the detriment or imbalance of the other two. Thus a practical person may look for immediate results or proof of the Divine in the laboratory foremost. Another will find intellectual or philosophical illumination in the QBL, perhaps to the detriment of laboratory activity or the application of astrological cycles to their life. But all three are aspects of the One when understood, and should be applied concurrently.

Students are invited to contribute their ideas, illuminations and problems to the journal for the general benefit since this journal is intended as a vehicle for communication between the students. Active communication and cross-fertilization of ideas will produce a richer product. None of us are authorities in these subjects.

We are all students and we are all "seeing through a glass darkly" or groping in the mists which only rarely part for seconds at a time, showing us a small illumination. But, however small our illumination, or whether it be first or second-hand, it can always be profitably shared.

One danger experienced in regard to spiritual or occult teachings in general is that of wandering too far away from the original given teachings and becoming lost in the burgeoning mire and confusion of other interesting and apparently parallel teachings. The curriculum of the PRS is complete and adequate with in itself. Also, it is noted by some students that communication occurs on a level other than the conscious. This does not mean that these are "the only true teachings" and that no other teachings should be read or studied in conjunction.

In fact, several other relevant and complementary books are and will be recommended. But these are limited in number. The living out of the teachings or putting them into practice is more recommended rather than too much reading about them.

If one is to use a "system" and progress in understanding, one should stick with the system rather than jumping from system to system like the occult shopper.

The triune teachings of the PRS is one system or way which has revealed itself as being rapidly illuminating for the devoted seeker of truth and understanding, as can be readily testified by many changed lives.


VALUE IN THE PERSONAL VISION

Many articles appearing in this and future editions of Parachemica do not necessarily constitute a part of the teachings of the PRS, but are personal contemplations and conclusions of students of the PRS.

Whenever absolute or intangible concepts are contemplted, the human mind invents symbolic models in an attempt to explain the unexplainable. Unexplainable only because the concepts do not yield to intellectual understanding alone.

Thus everyday written language becomes inadequate. These absolute ideas, to be understood, must be experienced. Also, any system or intellectual symbolic representation using imagery, geometry or number, cannot ever adequately define the Absolute or Ain Soph. But, however, some systems go further and are more useful in this regard than others. Such a system, by virtue of its basis on fundamental law and its flexible correspondences, is illustrated by the "Tree of Life" glyph of the QBL.

Therefore also, personal visions and contemplations are valid to the extent that the individual experiences and understands fundamental Cosmic laws. These laws are given in the Prima classes of the PRS curriculum.

No matter what level of realization is expressed in the articles contributed by students, it is hoped that these ideas will serve as a trigger to further, deeper thought and realization.

Top


GLASS OF ANTIMONY

From PRAKTISCHE ALCHEMIE IM ZWANZIGSTEN JAHRHUNDERT
(Practical Alchemy in the Twentieth Century) by Frater Albertus.
Translated by Arthur G. Fehres.
Unfortunately this book has not been published in English yet. Starting from p. 155

THE POURING OF GLASS IN A FURNACE

For smelting and pouring, the bottom of the furnace should be covered with one or two finger-widths of finely sifted quartz sand. The quartz sand will catch the small droplets of glass, which during the procedure might flow down the crucible. In this way the crucible can be removed anytime without sticking to the bottom of the furnace.

As we know, that in Antimony all colours exist, we try to pour glass of different colours.

In a new non-glazed crucible put Antimony Trisulfide (1 part) and Borax (2 parts). Beforehand, both ingredients are well ground and mixed in a mortar. Another time try a mixture with a proportion of 1 to 4 parts. It is also a worthwhile experiment to put Antimony Trisulfide or trioxide onto the still liquid glass remaining in the crucible after the glass has been poured out of it.

There are still other varieties and each one will even find a way to produce glass. Nobody, however, should become misled by the beautiful colours of the Vitrum Antimony, for after its change into glass its poison has not been taken out yet.

'While smelting Antimony Trisulfide sparks will jump up from it, which means, that through the great heat, the spirit is driven out while giving off a spray of sparks.

CITRINE-YELLOW GLASS OUT OF ANTIMONY TRIOXIDE

For one hour the furnace is heated until it shows a constant temperature of 1,000oC.

In a mortar the following are well ground and mixed

5 parts of Antimony Trioxide and 1 part of Borax.

Borax has nothing to do with Antimony. It is only a means of making the Antimony smelt easier.

A non-glazed crucible is filled with this mixture and put in the heat. After 15 minutes the first test can be made with a pointed steel knife. A certain quantity of liquid glass will stick to the cold steel point. The glass is brownish red.

The second test is about eight minutes later, therefore, 23 minutes after the crucible has been filled. This test shows a transparent citrine-yellow colour. Like this the glass is right.

With fire forceps the crucible is taken out of the furnace and as thinly as possible the liquid glass is poured onto a preheated fire proof dish. (Basil Valentine recommends pouring it on brass.) After cooling one keeps these pieces of glass in a well stopped wide necked bottle.

With 14 cruciblefuls of Antimony Trioxide a whole kilo of pure transparent citrine-yellow glass can be poured. To get less Borax in the glass the mixture can also be 8:1.

FROM MINERAL ROCK INTO GLASS DROPS
Using Antimony Trioxide in making glass, the quantity collapses, for example, the crucible can be filled to the brim and after a certain time can be filled again.

when working with Antimony Trisulfide the crucible is only half filled. This smelting substance expands and has be pushed down with fire forceps, if necessary. to prevent it from over wards ground into powder.

VITRUM, which has gone through the finest sieve, is still too course. In the mortar this has to be ground until unbelievably fine. The glass has been rightly prepared when with the tiniest bit of wind it behaves the same as dust.

Before breaking up the glass into small pieces it can be put on a clean sheet of paper in order to lose nothing at all of this dust. With a fine brush all of it can be carefully collected in a dish.

WASHING THE BORAX OUT OF THE VITRUM
The ground glass, with which we have filled the soxhlet thimble, has still alot of Borax in it. The Borax had been mixed with the Antimony Trioxide to achieve a better flowing of the glass during the smelting process and now this has to be washed out again.

The soxhlet is 3/4 filled with distilled, water. Through constant extraction and circulation the Borax is drawn out of the soxhlet flask. After a few hours new distilled water is used and repeated, if necessary, until after careful examinatibn the red litmus paper does not turn blue anymore. During this process the water stays clear and transparent. It is only through litmus paper that the alkalinity can be tested accurately enough. It is peculiar, that with the first extraction the water gets a soft yellow tinge. This, however, is not from the yellow glass powder in the thimble. Antimony does not dissolve in water, but in Antimony Trioxide are still traces of nitric acid left. Thus, what is chemically pure Antimony Trioxide, is alchemically still not pure enough. After the pouring of the glass-through higher temperatures using Antimony Trioxide without Borax even this nitric acid has to be washed out.

TRANSLATOR'S COMMENT
When working with antimony, go carefully about it, unless you want to poison yourself. You would do well to use a wet handkerchief to cover nose and mouth during operations such as pulverizing, mixing, smelting, etc. If you do these inside do not allow the fine dust particles to contaminate the t whole room and what is in it.

A small electric furnace has been proved to be better than a big one as the heating elements would be too far away from the crucible, lowering the heat in the centre of it considerably. One could also improvise a blasting furnace using e.g. gas and oxygen or air.

Porcelain crucibles, the size and shape of a cup, will prove to be very satisfactory.

Crucibles will last longer when you; a) dry them thoroughly before using;
b) heat them gradually before putting them in the furnace;
c) avoid quick cooling during refilling and pouring.

After a crucible has been cracked, putting some pieces of glass in a new one will act as a starter.

To obtain red glass of antimony requires more than 1,000oC. (1200oC plus)

Dropping a small piece of charcoal or charcoal granules on smelted antimony will purify it better and quicker.

Good quality citrine-yellow glass has been made using 8 parts antimony trioxide (commercial) and 1 part of Borax at 950o- 1,000oC.

Instead of a pointed steel knife a bent piece of sturdy wire can be used for testing without having to remove the crucible.


Top
Parachemica Contents