PARACHEMICA
Volume 1: Number 4 Winter 1977




Menorah: This design specified to Moses in Exodus is an earlier version of the Tree of Life. It has the active and passive sefirot to the left and right, with the central axis of equilibrium running down the central column. There were ten of these candlesticks in the Temple, one complete Tree within each sefirot of the Great Tree formed by their number.

Editorial: The Sacrifice Principle
Invocation of God

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EDITORIAL: THE SACRIFICE PRINCIPLE

The sacrifice principle is one very definite feature common to all true spiritual paths and religions. We see it embodied in the gentle simplicities of the Zen Buddhist way; in the discipline of Hindu Yoga methods; in Moslem dervish austerities; in Hassidic Jewish observances; in Christian charity; and in Magical and Occult controls over Will.

Each of the many paths of the One Way demands and embodies sacrifice. Sacrifice of what? What is sacrifice? Sacrifice is the death-rebirth process. some see sacrifice as meaning voluntary loss and death. But this is illusion.

The sacrifice spoken of is the disdaining or ignoring of the ego-centric self. That is, the desires of demands of the ego the senses; the desire for exclusive individual acquisition and power; the desires and demands of the separate self in isolation. The word sacrifice also means to make holy or to make whole, i.e. to make sacred or sanctify The illusion that this involves loss, pain, death, etc. is the so-called illusion of the separate self or the illusion of the flesh. It is all a question of viewpoint. The viewpoint here is from the standpoint of the Spirit and the evolved soul or higher self in unity with the Cosmos.

But to the "man of the flesh" immersed in the material world and driven by his desires, this process of sacrifice is very painful and is made most unwillingly, for he does not readily relinquish material "security" or sensory attachment.

He suffers because of his attachment.

On the other hand, he who strives for spiritual goals and soul evolution is more willing to consciously sacrifice. He suffers less pain, he who can relinquish the "flesh".

Sacrifice is a process of spiritualization.

It is a process of relinquishing attachment to sensory and material bonds as a basis for security and selfassertion, and the basing of the life on permanent spiritual values such as faith and a conscious link with divine will. That is, security becomes rooted in the Divine. This does not mean a rejection of materialism as a medium of evolution, but only its rejection as an end or goal in itself. Technology and matter must serve as a tool thru' which the Cosmic evolutionary process manifests. Technology must serve the God in Man (the higher self), not the desires of Man.

Again, the evolutionary process must bring a more subtle technology; a more spiritual technology; a spiritualization of medicine, agriculture and education. All this also means nothing but Sacrifice. This sacrifice is the death or breaking down of old ideas and the rebirth of the new. To the conservative this is painful. The security of the conservative is rooted in the status quo. But I am not suggesting revolution here in a political sense. Mans problems do not originate in the political arena and thus will not be solved there. The revolution must come from within the individual. The revolution needed is the oft-described rebirth or second birth of the individual. This, however, necessitates the death or sacrifice of the old self or ego-centric lower self.

The Tarot card, known as the Hanged Man, provides an excellent symbol for the sacrifice principle. The card shows a man hung upside down from a scaffold or tree by

one foot. The other foot is crossed over it. His face is smiling and a golden light surrounds his head. The fact that the man is upside down indicates, a reversal of conditions, i.e. the sacrifice that is not a sacrifice or sacrifice of the lower to the higher. It is not a sacrifice because the lower is not real. The lower is a mirror or mirage, endlessly shifting and changing, shimmering, illusory and non-permanent. The card also is known as the "watery sacrifice" and the figure is often shown suspended over the "water" or mirror or mire of the lower self. The card represents the 23rd path on the Tree of Life and also the Hebrew letter MEM, the element of WATER.

The aura or light about the head indicates the consciousness is already sacrificed or transmuted to the higher Cosmic state.

The cross of the legs indicates the sacrifice on the two beams of time and space plus the sacrifice of the four points of matter, the elements of fire, water, air and earth.

Looking at sacrifice in Gurdjieff's terminology, he sees the true path as involving "intentional suffering and conscious service" or sacrifice. This is essential for Man in order to create the necessary psychic energies required by higher intelligence for the evolutionary Work. Also essential for Man in order to receive the reciprocal "grace" to quicken his own conscious evolution.

Thus, sacrifice is service, spiritualization, transmutation, death/rebirth, evolution and alchemy and cannot be separated from these.

It is the way to Man finding his destiny as the hand maiden and channel for God and the higher intelligences and serve as the "missing link" in the Cosmic evolutionary chain stretching thru' minerals, vegetables and animals and beyond Man.

Obviously Jesus the Christ has provided us the classic life and symbol of the perfect sacrifice principle.

Man as he commonly is, is the "link" which is "missing". Man as he should be will only fulfil his destiny and rise to "Human" when he becomes this "link" and sacrifice is the Way.


INVOCATION OF GOD

All true alchemists will point out that the invocation of God is the first step for those who aspire after the wisdom attained in our art. Therefore, for once, let us have a good look at what the invocation of God is all about.

The dictionary gives the following common definitions of invocation:
1. The act of invoking; especially an appeal to a higher power for assistance;
2. A prayer or other formula used in invoking, as at the opening of a religious service;
3a. A conjuring or calling up of a spirit by incantation;
3b. The incantation used in conjuring. (From Latin invocatio, from invocare, to invoke.)

Fulcanelli, one of the master alchemists, on page 43 of his book "Le Mystere des Cathedrales", exclaims.. "What unsuspected marvels we should find if we knew how to dissect words, to strip them of their bark and liberate the spirit, the divine light which is within!". This conforms with other philosophers who urge to seek the spirit of the word and not to stick to its superfluous or common meaning.

Let us make an attempt to do just that and for a start, separate it into three parts, IN, VOCA and TION. Our attention immediately goes to VOCA, which refers to the voice and therefore, to sound, which we produce through our vocal cords. VOCA also refers to word or words, as through our vocal cords we voice our vocabulary. Depending on how many words one uses, one speaks of having a small or a big vocabulary. When ONE uses ONE WORD, that WORD is ONE's vocabulary. So we see, that VOCA also refers to language, because all the words of a language form a language.

TION at the end of invocation simply indicates the act (the act to invoke).

The IN of invocation is a bit more difficult to grasp. However, the difference between vocation (which is a calling, from Latin vocare, to call) and invocation is basically the same as between sight and insight. With sight we know, but with insight we understand. of course, instead of pertaining to sight and understanding, invocation pertains to sound and understanding. IN also means inside, (to be) with, part of and included.

Contemplation of the foregoing will throw tremendous light into this whole thing, especially when one realizes, that not invocation, but invocation of God is the first step.

This puts it in a different perspective. Instead of we invoking God, could it not be, that besides all this, God is calling (vocation of God, calling of God) and that we should be IN (included in) this calling of God? Should we not be on vacation (vacant, empty, free from every-day thought) when this vocation of God takes place on certain holy days of each month? Who, these days, connects those holy days with ones holidays?

Invocation of God also means (to be) IN WORD OF GOD and therefore, to have some understanding of the language of God. After all, the vocabulary forming the language of God is one ONE WORD. And the WORD is God. For those familiar with biblical terminology it would be interesting, keeping in mind that in some translations the word seed" is replaced by "offspring", to contemplate the following: John 1:1; Psalms 119:105; Luke 8:11; (for women: Genesis 3:15); Galatians 3:16; Collosians 1:26-27; John 6:48; John 6:58; lst Peter 1:23; John 8:51; Galatians 5:24.

To get a deeper understanding of the word as a combination of the letters W.O.R.D. we should turn to the Hebrew alphabet which consists of 22 letters, each letter having a concrete meaning.

There is no W in the Hebrew alphabet, but that which was used was a double V, Vau, having the meaning of "hook". In man the arms and legs are the hooks of the body. Vau also means a fixture, a coming down or a falling down of spirit towards (and forming) matter.

The double V, (W), is expressed in the Hebrew alphabet as TZADDI, the 18th letter, meaning fish hook. In occult literature man is sometimes referred to as a fish. Being the 18th letter it has a significant correspondence with the 9th letter Teth, meaning a coiled serpent and signifying the equilibrium of the male and female or positive and negative forces as manifested in the perfected HUMAN, so the 18th letter represents the imbalance of the positive and negative forces and therefore a falling down or drawing down of spirit. The saying goes, that one falls in love. Since the 6th letter (also phonetically) expresses the struggle between conscience and passions (ones nature) so the 18th letter W, which is 3 x 6 or 666, represents the beast, which is mentioned in Revelation, the Adam man. Mankind, living totally on the material plane, is therefore a beast physically, mentally and emotionally. The letter W, then, in mental or metaphysical alchemy, represents the earthly or Adam man, the material body and the lower mind. The letter 0, Ayin, meaning "eye", refers to a visible building and materialized spirit of God. About the number zero, which has the same shape, Frater Albertus in his book "From One To Ten" says: "Out of the formless emerges the "zero" in which must be sought all substance encountered on the physical (material) plane". Since God or THE ONE is undivided to become manifested in the material plane, THE ONE must first divide into two halves of the circle as is illustrated by the Yin-Yang sign, manifesting as positive and negative, male and female, electricity and magnetism. In the average man this dual force is out of balance and operating as such.

The letter R, Resh, is the 20th letter and means the head of man. It is, therefore, associated with constant movement for either good or bad and expresses renewal, restoration. (Phonetically, (to) rush.) It also symbolizes rest, like a ship may rest on water that is in motion. The head rests on the shoulders of the body, which may or may not be in motion.

The combination of 0 and R expresses something precious, which originally referred to gold, for the ancients realized that the sun's rays which they called "golden", precipitated in the body forming creative substance.

It is worthwhile to contemplate words having OR in it, e.g. ordeal, memory, ore, l'or (French for gold), born, organ, orgasm, corn, etc. Also aurum (Latin for gold), aura, ora (et) laborae, etc.

The last letter, D, Daleth, is the 4th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and means a door, curtain, a way-out, a possibility. It expresses abundance springing forth from division, a creation according to divine laws and domination of spirit over matter. In metaphysical alchemy the letter D stands for the solar plexus, (Bethlehem, the house of bread) as it is the reflection of the true sun (the Father) and the source of all things.

From all this one can appreciate that there is much more food for thought in INVOCATION OF GOD than what appears on its surface.

-Arthur G. Fehres


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