Astrology For The Neophyte - The Influence of the Constellations p.258
Hen Eggs - The Elements and Their Influence p.274
Informative Interchange - p.278 Vinegar of Antimony; Sandbath ,
Question and Answers p.281
Paracelsus - back cover
Influence of the Constellations
By Carl W. Stahl
In the first part of this series we gave you a somewhat condensed version of the planetary influences. If it has been some time since you read it, we suggest that you reread it before continuing to read the instructions which follow. At any rate it would be a good idea to have it handy so you can refer to it as we go along. It is important that you understand the method we are using, for it is only through understanding that we can attain wisdom.
The Table of Planetary Rulerships, with which we ended the previous lesson, gives us our first hints as to how to determine the influence of the constellations. The ancients held that the astrological influences of the constellations were the same as, or at least similar to, one or others of the planets in diurnal (day) and nocturnal (night) houses. The table we have given lists the day houses as positive and the night houses as negative.
Since the planetary rulers are merely similar to the constellations in influence and not exactly the same, the ancients gave us another Table to help us determine the influence of the constellations. They called it, TABLE OF EXALTATIONS. Below we give a version of it.
EXALTATION DEGREES OF THE CONSTELLATIONS
Planet Constellation Degree
Sun Aries 19
Moon Taurus 3
Mercury Virgo 15
Venus Pisces 27
Mars Capricorn 28
Jupiter Cancer 15
Saturn Libra 21
When a planet is in the opposite house to that of its exaltation, it is said to be in its fall, a position of great weakness. A planet in the house opposite to its rulership is said to be in its detriment, also a position of weakness.
Besides the preceding we have two more tables to consider if we are to give an accurate reading of the influences of the constellations. These are the Elements and the Quadruplicities. The elements are Air, Fire, Water, and Earth, three of each as shown in the following table.
AIR Libra, Aquarius, Gemini
FIRE Sagittarius, Aries, Leo
WATER Scorpio, Pisces, Cancer
EARTH Capricorn, Taurus, Virgo
AIR. Spiritual, abstract thought and ideas, artistic. FIRE. Idealistic, energizing and mentally creative. WATER. Emotional and receptive, and imaginative. EARTH. Practical and material, commercial and physical.
Then we have the quadruplicities. Here the zodiac is divided into three groups of four constellations.
CARDINAL Libra, Capricorn, Aries, Cancer
FIXED Scorpio, Aquarius, Taurus, Leo
MUTABLE Sagittarius, Pisces, Gemini, Virgo
The Cardinal constellations are the busy bees of the zodiac. Always busy, seldom thinking, they accept society as it is and work hard to succeed in the framework that society demands of them. They are expediters who drive the remainder of society before them in a desire for wealth and power.
The Mutable constellations are those who are caught between the drive of the Cardinal and the inertia of the Fixed. They are in a constant state of indecision not knowing which way to turn. They are quite intellectual but thought, in and of itself, is actionless. Thought only leads to action when activated by desire.
The Fixed constellations are seldom influenced by tradition, the opinions of others, conventions, nor the status quo. Only the truth influences them and they are the ones who influence the world's thoughts and ideas toward change.
Now let us use this information in determining how we should find out what the influences of the constellations are. The ancients held that the influence of the Sun was similar to the constellation Leo so they called the Sun its ruler. If you recall what we have been saying, you understand that this was not to be taken literally but as an indication of how to determine Leo's influence. No planet is exalted here. Saturn, as ruler of Aquarius, is in its detriment (Uranus if you use the modern rulerships). It is Fire and Fixed.
LEO. Natives of Leo have strong mental creative abilities along with a strong life force and an irresistable urge to shine. Being Fire they have much energy, are idealistic and creative. Being Fixed they have the ability
to think for themselves and. are not swayed by the opinions of others. As natural born leaders they have superb confidence in themselves, believing that they are infallible in whatever task they set for themselves. They are ambitious, egotistical, filled with self love, and seek identification with the supreme. Religious leaders and military commanders have the same goal. Both seek victory, ho'nor, decorations and the padeants that follow. The man of God spiritually, the other, physically. Leo is the 19th Path on the Tree of Life.
The influence of the, Moon was held'to be similar to that of the contellation Cancer so it was said to be its ruler, Jupiter is exalted in Cancer and Saturn, a ruler of the opposite constellation Capricorn, is in ,it detriment here. It is Cardinal and Water.
CANCER. Natives of Cancer are extremely emotional, sensitive, and
highly imaginative. So imagnative, in fact, that they have great difficulty
at times in distinguishing the real from the unreal. They are constantly in
a state of craving and their greatest craving is the approval of others. Be
cause of Jupiter's exaltation here and because Cancer is a Cardinal con
stellation, they tend to success in trade, business, and the professions. They
are moody, extremely sensitive to their environment and to their personal
appearance. They are concerned with the intimate, personal and private
affairs being extremely egocentric and have a tendency to take everything
in a personal way. The sexual urges are strong. They easily reach into the
subconscious, coming up with answers to solve their problems from this
storehouse of the memory. Cancer is the 18th Path on the Tree of Life.
The constellations Gemini and Virgo were considered to have an influence similar to that of Mercury. Gemini being its positive, or day house, and Virgo its negative, or night house. None of the original seven planets has its exaltation in either of these constellations while Jupiter is in its fall in Virgo, and its detriment in Gemini. Gemini is Air end Mutable. Virgo is Earth and Mutable.
They are talkative, dexterous, high-strung, easily startled, restless, and intellectual. They are given to writing, literature and study. Being Air they are not inclined to dig into the practical aspects requiring too deep or prolonged thought, but like their symbol (two boys of school age) they are apt to jump to conclusions without real thought. They are interested in business, mathematics, and mechanical things. Being prone to abstract thought they are not too good in daily affairs. If afflicted they could as easily become thieves as legitimate business men or women. Being Mutable they are not overly ambitious and can be quite easily manipulated. Gemini is the 17th Path on the Tree of Life.
Since Virgo is of the element of Earth, they are more practical and less given to flights of fancy as are those under Gemini. They are great planners and can go into such detail that they split the proverbial hair. They are good speakers and teachers, and because of their ability to go into great detail are able to impart to others the truth behind the outward appearance. Being Mutable they are not inclined to be overly ambitious and usually are more successful in working for others than in being their own boss. They are inclined to be shy and retiring but in spite of this quite brave and courageous. Virgo is the 20th Path on the Tree of Life.
Venus, the significator of love, was thought to have the same influence as the constellations of Taurus and Libra. Through observation the ancients found that those of these constellations were amorous, sociable, meek, gentle, and peace loying. They were courteous and disinclined to hard work but quite skilled in the arts. Taurus is Fixed and Earthy. The Moon is exalted here. Libra is Cardinal and Airy. Saturn is exalted here.
They have a warm, affectionate nature and an intense interest in philosophy and psychology. They are patient and understanding. They have great endurance and a. love for the truth. They are preoccupied with sex which is the one thing that can really goad them to action. They are mild and inoffensive otherwise, being the meekest children of the zcdiac. They love large families and have love to spare for all mankind. Being Fixed their ideas are original and they change their mind for no one. Only the truth can inove them. Being Earth they are quite practical and material. Taurus is the 16th Path on the Tree of Life.
Saturn being exalted here they are not as outgoing nor as apparently loving as their Taurus counterparts. They do, however, have a love for all mankind. Saturn makes them forgetful, apt to appear sullen and taciturn with a desire for secrecy. They excel in the arts having great joy in painting, drawing, sculpture, and decorating. They love the social life and take a great delight in the theater, ballrooms, music halls, and the social world in general. Being Cardinal they are great expediters of the rules of the establishment. They lead by example. Being Air they incline to abstract thought and have great difficulty in being practical. Libra is the 22nd Path on the Tree of Life.
The ancients considered Mars as the ruler of Aries and Scorpio because the natives of these constellations were aggressive, having a great desire to lead and to conquer. The Sun is exalted in Aries. The Moon falls in Scorpio. Aries is Fire and Cardinal. Scorpio is Water and Fixed.
Because the Sun is exalted here Aries has an urge to lead. They are mentally aggressive, imperious and positive. They like to, induce others to do the actual physical leading, especially in battle, remaining in the background directing and controlling others. They love to compete, in fact life is a contest to them which they must win. The competition must be eliminated at all costs. In spite of his penchant for the rear in combat Aries is very courageous. He prefers the rear because it enables him to better direct the course of events. Aries is the 15th Path on the Tree of Life.
They express more closely the negative expression of Mars. They fight for the sheer love of combat. If they cannot fight physically they will attack verbally, through writing, or any other way they can, because fight they must. Life would be boredom indeed if there were nothing to fight about. Being Fixed they are slow to change their attitude about anything and, although quite physical in approach, they make up their own minds and stick to it. Both Aries and Scorpio are quite accident prone and are quick to anger. Scorpio is the 24th Path on the Tree of Life.
Jupiter was considered as the ruler of Sagittarius and Pisces because it was found that they, like Jupiter, aspired to the best of all things. Sagittarlus is Fire and Mutable. Mercury is in its detriment here. Pisces is Water and Mutable. Venus is exalted and Mercury is in its fall here.
They are idealists, upholders of law and order, and aspire to the best in all fields of human endeavor. They have great reverence for that which is dignified, noble, respectable, honorable, distinguished, and academic. Hence they are often found in the professions, churches, and diplomatic fields. Being Fiery they prefer to work in mental fields rather than in those requiring physical effort. Being Mutable they lack ambition and if they cannot succeed themselves like to, be seen in the company of those who do. Sagittarius is the 25th Path on the Tree of Life.
They express the more negative side of Jupiter and the best that they aspire to is more sensual and artistic. They aspire to luxury, food, wines, and soft easy living. They are inclined to gamble, hate work, and are experts in the art of make believe and flattery. Venus being exalted here gives them a social bent and a desire to be with others at social events and large gatherings. Since Mercury is in its fall they abhor mathematics, business, and feel that if they can only find the right ritual or contact the right people they will have it made. Being Water they are quite, emotional and receptive. Being Mutable they lack ambition and are easily led. Pisces is the 29th Path on the Tree of Life.
Saturn, the planet of restriction, was given as the ruler of Capricorn and Aquarius because they were known to be solitary, frugal with money and food, and kept themselves aloof from others. They had an interest in studying the unusual and occult. Mars is exalted in Capricorn and the Moon is in its detriment there. It is Earth and Cardinal. Under some methods Mercury is exalted in Aquarius but in most it is Virgo. The Sun has its detriment here. It is Air and Fixed.
They are frugal with their money, their food, and their choice of words as well as all things in general. Being Earth they are highly practical and are attracted by science, astrology, the occult, and magic and may be prominent in masonic and other secret societies, Most have some musical ability. Since Mars is exalted here, they are quite forceful and energetic and being, Cardinal have leadership ability, in fact Saturn is usually identified with the establishment and things as they are, being reluctant to change. Moon. in detriment here freezes the emotions and they are not very demonstrative. It is the 26th Path on the Tree.
The positive constellation of Saturn is noted for its inventive genius along with its astronomical and mathematical ability. They have unusual interests and a sympathetic understanding of human nature being always ready to lend a willing ear to the troubles of others. Since the Sun is in its detriment they have none of the false pride, ambition, and desire for prestige that goes with Leo. If we allow that Mercury is exalted here we see that, being Air, it obtains knowledge without effort. Being Mutable ties in with its lack of ambition and desire for fame and honor. It is the 28th Path on the Tree of Life.
We hope that the foregoing brief paragraphs will enable you to go on and write up quite sizeable explanations on the influence of the constellations.
By Siegfried 0. Hansch
In further experimentation with hen eggs a second Easter Egg Experiment was conducted, similar to the one described in the original report of such an experiment and which appeared in the ALCHEMISTICAL LABORATORY BULLETINS Vol. II, No. 2, 1970 and Vol. 11, No. 10, 1972 as well as my own report in PARACHEMY Vol. II, No. 3, 1974. The conditions were again minutely observed. Two fresh laid eggs from each day, before and after Easter 1974, were selected in that MARS year.
From April 9th, the Tuesday before Good Friday, through the Easter week and through April 20, 1974, two fresh laid eggs from each day were selected. On April 9, 1975, after 359 days of storage, the eggs were opened before two witnesses. The eggs during this period were again stored on top of a high cupboard in the basement laboratory. The temperature was 65o to 70o F. (18o- 20o C.).
All eggs, with the exception of one, were in AI condition. Some dehydration occurred in all eggs. The one egg from Wednesday before Easter, April 10th, was putrified.
Those eggs from April 16th, the Tuesday before Easter, through April 20th were absolutely dehydrated and hardened - no liquid! All other eggs had some liquid in them.
Another experiment involved a selection of fresh eggs laid during the influence of a water sign, Scorpio, from October 27, 1974 through November 11, 1974. After a period of 165 days of storage, under the same conditions as in the above experiment, these eggs were opened, April 9, 1975.
All eggs were in excellent condition. Very little dehydration occurred and all eggs had an ordinary, fresh smell. Here there is a good indication that the influence of the water element combined with the fire element in this Mars year produced this extraordinary pure state.
Despite ideal putrefaction temperatures of 65o-70oF., all eggs used and stored for 359 days in the Easter Egg Experiment, with the one exception and the dehydration that occurred, and all eggs used and stored for 165 days in the other experiment, with no exceptions and only slight dehydration, were in excellent condition,
The influence of the FIRE element during the Cardinal sign of Aries and the WATER element during the fixed sign of Scorpio and the influence of MARS as ruler of this particular year, being the influences under which these eggs were selected, is noteworthy and merits our attention. Such is indicative of the importance of the influence of the elements and the signs of the Zodiac. Their influence should at all times be considered in our alchemistical laboratory work.
In comparison, I should like to point out that the Canadian EGG Marketing Board in June 1974 had to destroy over 20 million eggs after 6 months of ideal storage in cool houses, which made life for the Minister of Agriculture most difficult.
(left)Eggs laid and placed in storage (359 days) during influence of fire element.
(right)Eggs laid and placed in storage (165 days) during influence of water element.
No Sulphuric Acid in Vinegar of Antimony
I would like to make a comment about the Vinegar of Sb2S3 The experiment procedure that was chosen is found on page 171 of Waite's translation of The Triumphal Chariot of Antimony.
After the tincture was poured off and filtered several times, it was distilled to dryness, returned to the gummy residue, and again distilled. A clear vinegar of Ph 2.5 was obtained each time.
Both the tincture and the vinegar were subjected to the following tests to determine if any sulfuric acid (H2SO4) were present.
First, a quantitative test for H2SO4 is made by adding 1 ml. of tincture of Sb2S3 to 1 ml. of a saturated solution of Barium acetate, This is a positive test if the reaction takes place and Barium sulphate precipitates. No precipitate formed, and so the test was considered negative in both the tincture and the vinegar.
Secondly, it may be added that H2SO4 does not easily evaporate nor distill and, because the residue could be taken to dryness, no H2SO4 was formed in this experiment.
Thirdly, each were heated in the presence of mercury and did not dissolve the mercury. Vinegar of Antimony (flash evaporated) was heated (boiled) with a drop of mercury. It did not dissolve the mercury.
Fourthly*, an extract of vinegar (tincture) before distillation, when heated, did not dissolve mercury added to it to see if sulphuric acid is present-in this case the mercury would dissolve. The mercury had not dissolved so the tincture does not contain sulphuric acid.
These experimental tests show that the tincture and the vinegar of Antimony distilled out of the tincture do not contain any H2SO4 (sulphuric acid) and in this case the Ph 2.5 of the tincture and the vinegar of Antimony are NOT CORROSIVE.
An important fact has emerged in the above mentioned experiment. The test has shown no sulphuric acid to be present. In the last issue of Parachemy mention was made that sulphuric acid could form. This would apply when the container is left unstoppered and the water and air could act as oxidizing agents upon the antimony trisulphide in due time to form some sulphuric acid.
We are indeed very happy to bring this announcement as given above
that tests have shown no sulphuric acid to be contained in the antimonial acid or vinegar of Antimony.
-Dale Halverstadt, U.S.A.
*These tests were made at the PRS Laboratories.
Construction of an energy-saving, alchemistical-working sandbath
After completion of my first soxhlet extractions-circulations and macerations, I noticed, particularly with my seven basic tinctures, that the niacerations seemed to be considerably, more potent. From the ancient Arabs we learn where to find our missing link. They used almost exclusively the heat of the sun, which matures the menstruum gradually. Our physicists and chemists also tell us that heat per se is an energy of motion, which moves the molecules and atoms. The higher the temperature the quicker and faster these molecules and atoms move and integrate. Pauling states:
"Each 10o Celsius raise in temperature brings about a DOPPELING of the chemical reaction." (!) Consequently, a raise of temperature of 20oC. (70oF.) brings a reaction which is 22 = 4 times, at 100oC. (212o F.) a reaction of 2 = 1024 times.
Since in all alchemistical processes time is taken and the work proceeds gradually, this distinguishes the alchemistical approach and may explain some of the difference in results obtained by an alchemistical procedure as opposed to the procedure of the chemist of today.
When laboratory work is planned ahead of time, 80% to 85% of the work can be carried out with a slow, gentle heat, even in the metallic kingdom. Further, magnetization is, under such circumstances, much easier cared out, especially when we are still a little "green" on this subject.
After operating two Fast-fryers for two months, I was somewhat astonished to see my electric bill! For some time, I also observed that most of the heat escapes to the top and that the flasks are still cool on the upper part, even at a relatively high setting. Too, there was the problem of not having enough room for all the different flasks and bottles.
In consequence of all of this, I constructed a very simple and most efficient sandbath from aluminum tin and 2" Styrofoam. Styrofoam is used as an insulator on all sides including the bottom and top. An old icebox or refrigerator could also be used but it must have a metal interior. The overall size of the sandbath is 40" long by 2o" wide and 22" deep. First, it is filled with 2" and. Then, a heating cable as is used to protect waterpipes from freezing or that which is used on roofs to prevent ice from building up is placed on the 2" layer of fine sand. The new plastic shielded type of heating cable is only 1/4 the price of a lead shielded one. When the heating cable is placed on top of the 2" fine sand in neat rows, care needs to be taken to ensure that the cables do not touch, as this would increase the heat too much and it is possible that this would cause them to burn out. Another 2" of fine sand is used to cover the heating cables.
The 4" of sand maintain and retain the heat and there remains 16" of clearance inside the sandbath, which is sufficient room for most gallon and other bottles. The top piece of Styrofoam is loose and serves as a lid. This can be punctured to allow a bottle or flask neck to be outside the sandbath, giving better circulation. When these punctured areas are not in use, the areas need to be carefully sealed, otherwise a great loss of heat will occur.
The heating cable is plugged into a simple and inexpensive timer. The timer can be set for any time and cuts out after as many hours as it is set for, repeating the cycle on a 24 hour basis. The cable uses only 240 watts per hour, which works out in a seven hour period to 1680 watts at approximately 2.5 cents per kilowatt, not even 5 cents for the 24 hour period.
The old axiom is followed: "LET THE KING WORK IN THE DAY AND REST AT NIGHT. The cycle begins with sunrise and ends seven hours later. The temperature in the sandbath varies from a low of 32oC. (90oF.) to a high of 60o-65o C. (140o-150o F). If the lid is left open for any length of time, the temperature naturally stays lower.
The advantage of this sandbath over most other inexpensive arrangements is that over 20 times as much can be placed into it and it is possible with such a sandbath as this to have a genuine rising and falling of the menstruum within a 24 hour period. The latter in itself is of great importance, being of special significance in work that proceeds alchemistically.
-Siegfried 0. Hansch, Canada
"The word "discipline" means "to learn". A "disciple" is one who
learns, not who conforms, not who obeys; he is one who is constantly learning. And when learning ceases and becomes merely accumulation of knowledge then disorder begins."
Questions and Answers
Q. You mentioned to us that Sulphur was related to the planet Vulcan. Your first attribution was Platinum. Also, my notes show nothing for Pluto, Adonis, and Chronos. Would you comment on this please.
A. Planetary influences are attributed to all three kingdoms-vegetable, mineral, and metal. In the case of Vulcan, the mineral referred to is Sulphur and the metal is Platinum. Pluto is associated with Uranium, Adonis with Aluminum, and Chronos with Silicon.
Q. When two planets are in opposition to each other, what is the difference in the aspect's effect if one of the planets is the overtone of the other?
A. The different polarity.
Q. Is there a difference between Borate 99.5 and Borax 99.5?
A. Both refer to sodium Borate.
Q. How long should it take to extract vinegar from raw antimony ore with distilled rain water using a soxhlet extractor?
A. It varies. Some have extracted it within weeks. Others found it to take months.
Q. What is the difference between the alkahest, prima materia, and first matter?
A. The last two are the same and have been explained or interpreted in various ways, meaning the substance out of which originated sulphur, salt, and mercury. Again, the mercury is referred to by some as the prima materia without which nothing may be accomplished in the laboratory. The word alkahest is also used in different ways. There are many alkahests but only one Philosophical Mercury. An alkahest is a solvent and may be derived from vegetable, mineral, and metallic sources. The alkahest, the Philosophical Mercury, is derived from metals.
Q. Is the color of a flower any indication as to the ray it is influenced by? How would you determine this. Also, some flowers change color.
A. Not necessarily. The ray absorbed by a flower is not one but many. Its excess is given up and may or may not be the opaqueness of the color we see in a flower.
Q. An acetate produces a fixed spirit but does it necessarily produce a fixed oil?
CONCERNING THE DEATH OF NATURAL THINGS
The death of all natural things is nothing else but an alteration and removal of their powers and virtues, an overthrow of their potencies for evil or for good, an overwhelming and blotting out of their former nature, and the generation of a new and different nature.* For it should be known that many things which in life were good, and had their own virtues, retain little or none of that virtue when they are dead, but appear altogether fatuous and powerless. So, on the other hand, many things in their life are evil, but in death, or after they have been mortified, they display a manifold power and efficacy, and do much good.
We could recount many examples of this, but that is altogether foreign to our purpose. Yet, in order that you may see that I do not write from my mere opinion, however plausible, but from my experience, it is well that I should adduce one example with which I will quiet and silence the sophists who say that nothing can be gained from dead things, nor anything ought to be sought or found in them. The cause of this assertion is that they value at nothing the preparations of the alchemists, by which many great secrets of this kind are discovered.
For look at Mercury, live and crude sulphur, and crude antimony; as they are brought from the mines, that is, while they are still living, how small is their virtue, how lightly and tardily do they exercise their influence. Indeed, they bring more evil than good, and are rather a poison than a medicine. But if, by the industry of a skilled alchemist, they are corrupted into their first substance and prudently prepared (that is, if the Mercury be coagulated, precipitated, sublimated, resolved, and turned into oil; the sulphur be sublimated, calcined, reverberated and turned into oil; and, in like manner, Venus be sublimated, calcined, reverberated, and turned into oil), you see what usefulness, what power and virtue, and what rapid efficiency they afford and display, so that none can fully speak or write of it. For their manifold virtues are not to be investigated, nor can any one search them out. Every alchemist, therefore, and every faithful physician, ought to seek into these three things during his whole life, and even up to his death should play with them and find his pastime in them. Most assuredly they will nobly compensate him for all his labour, study, and expense.
*Death is the mother of tinctures, for tinctures proceed from the mortification of the body,
in which the colours are contained, even as in a seed there are green, yellow, black, blue,
and purple colours, which are, nevertheless, invisible until the seed has perished in the
earth, and till the sun has prepared and produced them, so that what was first hidden from
the senses is now revealed to them-De Icteritiis.
From THE HERMETIC AND ALCHEMICAL WRITINGS OF PARACELSUS, Vol. I, pgs. 138-139.