The Inkilabs at Bit Nur
An excerpt from 'The Alchemist of the Rocky Mountains'
a novel by
Frater Albertus 1976
A limited edition of 500 copies.
"Actually, what I am relating is second-hand. Don't think for a moment that the one involved in this adventure is myself, who under a disguise is telling you this. The doctor's name is Musallam. As you can see, this is a nom de plume. He resided in Vienna and about fifty years ago founded a masonic lodge and called it The Order of the Knights of Light. It was also known as the 'Adonistic Society' and its Supreme Lodge was known as 'Hekate.' He belonged also to the Lodge 'el Khaf.'
"That's strange," interrupted Dr. Farnsworth. I heard of this order long ago. In fact, while I was in Vienna as a young man, a friend of mine lived on the very street where its headquarters were located. If I think hard enough, the name of the street should come to me. Let me see, it had something to do with the muses."
"Was it Euterpe?" asked Dr. Syndergaard.
"No." Dr. Farnsworth shook his head. "I've got it - Thaliastrasse. That's the name; and believe it or not, the house number was 46. Not only that, the district of Vienna was 16." He shook his head again. "This is odd. Tell me, why should I remember so vividly this street and number? I really don't know. Should any one of you ever get to Vienna, try to find out if at this number more than fifty years ago this Dr. Musallam had his or his society's office there."
Elizabeth Gunderson spoke up. "Just for the record, this should prove an interesting experience."
"Yes," said the alchemist, "it would he interesting. In fact, this address is correct."
Everyone looked at each other, then at Dr. Farnsworth, but no words were spoken. The alchemist continued. I have with me what Dr. Musallam wrote when he had returned from Bit Nur. He called it, 'The Alchemy of the Sages of Bit Nur.'"
Reaching in his coat pocket, he unfolded some papers. I had to translate it into English, as the original is written in German. A friend, who was determined to find this place, asked me to translate it for him, because he could not read German. I have never heard from him since; but one day he will come back and it will be quite interesting to find out what he has to say - that is, if he ever found the place."
"Go on, read it to us," urged Elizabeth Gunderson. "Please do."
The alchemist smiled. "It makes a nice little story that I think you will enjoy. Please remember, these are not my personal experiences but those of Dr. Musallam." He unfolded and sorted some of the sheets of paper and began to read.
"In the upper story of the left wing of the temple or monastery building of Bit Nur, consisting of several rooms, was the chemical laboratory of the Chakimim. During my first visit there, I got to know about it only in connection with the archive, museum, library and the astrological observatory. However, during my second visit, when under the name of Musallam I became a member of the Order of the Chakimim, Arya Manas my friend and patron, who was the head of the Chakim and Grandmaster of the Order and also, the ruler of the realm known in their own language as the Land of Light, initiated me into the secrets of their ancient sanctuary.
"Years have gone by since then; yet I recall our conversation, which preceded our visit to the laboratory, as if it happened only yesterday.
"We talked about the 'Kingdom to come;' namely the end of the aeon of the 'other one' and the return of the Golden Age with its outer changes, which this period of fortune would bring to mankind.
"My friend, I beg of you, do not misunderstand me,' said Arya Manas to me, while sitting on the balcony of one of his many rooms. We were smoking from the water pipe and every so often we tasted the scharbit, an ice-cooled lemonade, while looking out over the expanding panorama of the landscape.
"'Do not misunderstand me. It will not occur overnight on the 31st of December in the year 2000 and suddenly by some act of magic the entire world will be changed on the Ist of January in the year 2001; nor will entire mankind, a sorry lot of half animalistic beings with their passions, vices and sicknesses, go to bed with all their worries and woes the night before and awake suddenly the next morning as redeemed angel-like beings in paradise. This, my friend, would be a completely wrong conception.'
"'No, no. This big change, this last overpowering revolution, will take place altogether differently. It will begin decades before and continue for centuries thereafter. Actually, it has already begun; and, to him who knows, the signs of the times are already only too obvious. The great war has created conditions upon earth that cannot possibly endure forever but carry within them the seeds for new tremendous happenings. The next decades will bring more accumulations of similar events - new and smaller wars and single revolutions that will, nevertheless, shake up nations to their foundations and towards the end of the Twentieth Century lead to the formation of a giant nation of Europe.'
"'A giant European nation,' I interrupted suspiciously. 'And what nation within it will take the lead? What will it be, republic or monarchy?'
"'The latter,' replied Arya Manas knowingly, ignoring my first question. 'Such a nation can only be a monarchy.'
"'And who will be the monarch? Out of what nation or dynasty will he come?' I insisted.
"'His name will be "World Peace," was his secret-sounding information. 'His realm will reach from the Ural Mountains to the Pillars of Hercules. The nation to whom he belongs has now fallen from its former world power and lies ill and sick. Its dynasty is almost uprooted and gruesomely stepped upon.
"'More I can but may not reveal to you at this hour, my friend. By the time you have learned to read the stars, this secret will reveal itself.'
"'As well as possible, I tried to hide my disappointment. What would I have given to lift just a corner of the veil so that I could tell my own people about its fate. Today, as I write this, my curiosity has been satisfied. In the meantime, I have learned to read in the stars, whose golden-flaming writings do not lie. But, if you who read this should ask me as I asked Arya Manas at one time, I too am forced to answer, at this hour I cannot reveal anything about it.
`What I don't need to conceal from you,' my noble friend continued after a period of silence, 'is the way and the means by which this giant nation at the portal of this new age will come about.'
"'How else,' I interrupted, 'but as all great nations up to now by cruel wars, killing each other and the shedding of blood.'
"'Arya Manas smiled. 'That would be a sad way towards a Kingdom of Peace. Surely, entirely without war and entirely without shedding of blood, it will not be accomplished; but the biggest weapon will be different. Not far-reaching guns, not fire or poisonous gases, not tanks, submarines, airplanes or guided missiles will be deciding but ... the Ass of Phillip of Macedonia.'
"'The Ass of Phillip of Macedonia!'
"I grasped instantly what was meant; but should you who read this not know the story, then let me help you by explaining that this King of Macedonia, the father of Alexander the Great, is supposed to have said that an ass loaded with gold can climb over the walls of the highest fortress.
"'Yes,' said Arya Manas, 'the ass loaded with gold of King Phillip. Though it will not prove to be the best general, it surely proves to be the best diplomat.'
"Continuing in his way of description, I replied, 'Well, I suppose it would take more than just a donkey loaded with gold. In fact, not just one donkey but a caravan of loaded camels or elephants. Today, one cannot buy just one city as in the times of Phillip; one must deal with wealthy states and nations.'
"'No,' Arya Manas interrupted, 'not states but statesmen. A state is a concept but statesmen are men and men can always be had for gold - no matter what the price.'
"I looked at him doubtfully. 'I don't know if all the different interests of statesmen in our time can he removed from the world; I don't know if even all the gold available now in all its forms would be sufficient.'
"He took a long draw on his waterpipe; and then, he replied casually, 'Most likely not. Well, then we will have to add more to it until there is enough.'
"That would be rather difficult. As far as I know, gold mining yields less and less gold in countries where it was formerly plentiful.
From year to year and day to day, it is getting more difficult to make expenses break even with production. Even, if in the next decades more gold could be produced and all available gold would serve its purpose, how could it all possibly be united, which would be necessary in such a case?'
"Arya Manas again smiled. 'My dear friend, you misunderstood me a little. I did not mean the gold reserves of the world financiers or the mining of this precious metal.'
"'You don't? Then, what exactly do you mean?'
"`For example, what would you say if I would tell you that we, namely, the Chakimim here at Bit Nur, have already started to prepare a much larger stockpile of gold for the future ruler of the Kingdom of Peace than the entire known gold now distributed over the earth?'
"'And if I were to assure you further that this already exceeds the former many times ... that in subterranean caves, carved out of rocks below Bit Nur, many hundred pound gold bars are stacked up.
"'Ah.' My surprise was too big to air it other than by this plain interjection.
"'Also, that we are only waiting for the day when this Prince of Peace will be born - because he is not born as yet - to support his faithful followers who are in exile with the first means for propaganda.'
"'Then you are alchemists!' I could finally say. 'Does this dynasty now in exile know that you are making preparations towards their world might? You, who are given to read in the stars, is it given you to know the day this Prince of Peace will be born?'
"'I shall answer your last question first. The date of his birth will be May 7, 1986. It would be too early to try to establish contact with this to-be ruling family. As to our alchemy, it would be best to find out for yourself.'
"The chemical laboratory of Bit Nur consisted as previously mentioned of several rooms of which I had seen only two on my previous visit. They were not any different from those we see in any modem laboratory of the various institutions we come in contact with. The remaining ones were locked at that time.
"As I hurried along, following Arya Manas' invitation to accompany him, I was surprised to see him pass the door through which we had entered during my first visit.
"'The laboratory consists of five rooms,' he explained. 'Two of them you are acquainted with. In the third one the Stone of the Wise is now being prepared. The fourth is sort of a chapel in which it is kept. In the fifth the Chakimim gather when they go through through the ritual of the Inkilab.' *
"'Then you do know how to produce the Stone of the Wise?' I said.
"'Yes,' he answered. 'Although our stone is not exactly identical with the one of the alchemists of the middle ages. Theirs was a crude yellow colored mineral that, when added to the molten metal, was absorbed and brought about the transmutation. Ours, by comparison, is a glass-like crystal that radiates light; and any metal coming in the field of its rays will be transmuted into the next higher specimen, such as copper into silver and silver into gold.'
"'But what would happen if you wanted to transmute copper into gold?' I asked.
"Then you would have to repeat the process.'
"During our conversation, we had arrived at the next door, which Arya Manas now unlocked. We entered a room of approximately fifteen by thirty feet. The only light that entered it came through one window on the long side of the wall that had shutters. Across the entrance, through which we had come, was another door that was closed. This, I supposed would lead to the 'Chapel.' The floor was covered with thick straw mats; the ceiling and walls were painted plain white. On the left side, from the door across the room, stood a rather large chest. On top, in orderly fashion, lay about a dozen pair of dark glasses - eye glasses with massive gold frames.
"There was something that especially attracted my attention. All the buildings had door handles made of copper, including the door through which we had entered, whereas, on the inside they looked like they were of gold. As I turned around to check once more, Arya Manas explained, 'This door handle, too, was once copper - likewise, the frames of those dark eye glasses over there on the chest. Since they are exposed to the radiations of the crystal, they have been transmuted into gold. Right now we won't need the eyeglasses. Later on we will have to use them. But now, first come with me.'
"With those words he opened the door to the chapel. This room was about half the size of the former and was square. It had no windows, only a second door to the left. The light which entered from the room we came from was sufficient to see what it was like. Here, too, the ceiling and walls were painted plain white; and again a large straw mat covered the floor. In the center of the room stood a small octagonal stable surrounded by seven similar ones. On the center table rested a platter of alabaster over which was a domelike cover of the same material. The diameter of the dome-like cover was about 30 centimeters. The remaining tables were empty.
"'The next room,' said Arya Manas, 'is really our alchemical workroom that is connected with the laboratory. We'll look around in there some other time. Today we only want to witness the effects of the Billur - that is what we call crystal in our language.'
"'This surely will interest me immensely,' I assured him.
"'Be patient for a little while and I shall call the Chakimim at once to the Inkilab.' With these words he stepped over to the door on the side and he knocked three times in a very distinct rhythm.
"From there, i.e., the laboratory, this sign must have been given throughout the building in some manner, because within a minute's time one could hear doors being open and shut; and soon after the first of the Chakims appeared in the anteroom. Since they knew me, they were not surprised to see me. There were seven that had appeared for the 'ceremony.' After we finished greeting each other, without further ado, they reached for the eye glasses. Arya Manas followed their example and urged me to do likewise.
"The utter blackness of the eye glasses was so strong that several minutes passed by before my eyes became accustomed to them. I could barely make out the tip of my nose and the hand in front of my eyes. It was like being in a very darkened room. "In the meantime, Arya Manas had opened the door connecting the 'chapel' with the anteroom. One of the Chakimas opened the top of the chest that was next to the door. Then, they turned back into the anteroom and stood in a row across from the wall with the window in it. Now, Arya Manas reached for my hand and guided me into the farthest corner of the 'chapel.' Soon afterwards, I felt his hand feeling over my face, making certain that my eye glasses were properly placed. Then he left me. For about one minute there was absolute silence in both rooms and I sensed that the great moment had arrived. And so it had.
"'Bishum Adunna - in the name of the Lord,' sounded suddenly Arya Manas' voice from the middle of the chapel. At the same time he lifted the alabaster dome from the little center table. What then followed made me almost cry out in astonishment. Suddenly, an intense light filled the entire room a light so bright, pure and snow-white that our artificial lights and carbon arcs could not possibly produce it. Yes, so strong that if I would not have been entirely sure I would not have believed I had black glasses over my eyes. 1 had to touch the rims to be certain. It was a neutralizing light, the dark glasses making it possible for me to see things as though they were colorless or transparent from the beginning. Intense as the light was, it was not glaring - thanks to the protective eye glasses. Without them, my eyes could have hardly endured it.
"And where did this wonderful light come from? From a crystal, the size of a fist, on the round alabaster plate on the little center table came the glare. I noticed, after some time while looking at this shape, that it was of an Ikositetraeder.(Twenty-four sided)
"But listen ... what was that? A monotonous song reached my ears, coming from the anteroom. The Chakims had raised their voices; and, attentively listening, I could understand each word. It was kind of a hymn in which 1 noticed certain expressions that reminded me of the Emerald Tablet of Hermes Trismegistus. As I did find out later, it was the original text. It was sung in the Chaldean language and I shall give it here in the English translation:
PRAISE AND HONOR BE UNTO OUR LORD WHO CREATED HEAVEN AND EARTH THROUGH A WORD. AND HE CREATED THAT WHICH IS ABOVE LIKE UNTO THAT WHICH IS BELOW AND THAT WHICH IS BELOW LIKE THAT WHICH IS ABOVE.
HIS FATHER IS THE SUN, HIS MOTHER THE MOON, AND HIS BREATH THE WIND BLOWING GENTLY OVER THE EARTH FRUCTIFYING IT.
AND THE CREATURES FROM BELOW MIX THEIR POWERS WITH THOSE FROM ABOVE AND THEY BEGET A WONDERFUL BEING.
FOUR ELEMENTS DOES IT CONTAIN WITHIN ITSELF.
IN ITS EARTH IS OUR LORD. IN ITS WATER IS OUR LORD. IN ITS AIR IS OUR LORD. IN ITS FIRE IS OUR LORD.
EARTH, WATER, AIR AND FIRE PAY ATTENTION TO HIS WILL, AND OBEY THE LAW OF OUR LORD.
THUS IS THE WORLD CREATED AND THE NAME OF OUR LORD IS THE KEY TO ITS SECRET.
"These seven verses were repeated three times. A deep silence followed when the song had ended.
"Arya Manas, who had stood next to me and who had remained motionless the entire time, walked towards the center table to place the alabaster dome over the crystal. He picked it up from the floor where he'd placed it when the crystal was uncovered. As he lowered it over the crystal, the white light disappeared. When I removed my glasses, I noticed that it was not completely dark again. The seven metal bars on the tables surrounding the center table gave off a fluorescent light, some pronouncedly bluish while others had a green glimmer. Yet, the whole appearance lasted only a few seconds. "Now, the shutters next door were opened again; and the Chakims entered to get the metal bars. When I examined them later by daylight, even my last doubts had to vanish - I held pure gold and silver in my hands.
"After that, Arya Manas gave explicit explanations about the entire procedure of the Inkilab, about its being and the whole manufacture of the Billur.
"Since those explanations were given to me under the seal of silence, I cannot make them public in their entirety. Only some of it shall be hinted at. At any rate, it convinced me that our present day chemistry is still rather far off from solving its last great problem, to find the particulars of the structure of matter and the opposing comparisons of the 'Elements' which are no elements; likewise the present periodic system of the socalled elements which contain too many openings.
"Arya Manas, as will be remembered, told me that the Billur, each time, transmutes the metal into the next higher group, i.e., copper into silver, silver into gold. If one studies the periodic table of the elements, it will be seen that this is so. But how is it with iron, platinum, mercury and lead? Here the proper order has definitely not been established.
"Further, Arya Manas, who was informed about the results of our modern researches, told me that the so-called orderly numbers of the elements from 1 to 112, which supposedly are representing the positive nuclei and the numbers of its negative electrons, in reality, have nothing to do with it as the atomic weight is the determining factor.
"These numbers are for the time being to be looked upon as arbitrary and will have to be changed again after the discovery of further 'elements' in between which are not isotopes.
"What finally the thing in itself and the manufacture of the Billur concerned, he explained to me, was the original Stone of the Philosophers, as Hermes Trismegistus knew it, and which differed from the one of the middle ages not because of its substance but because of its crystallization. Also, he explained that in the latter, science was not far enough advanced. The crystal represents the 'Individium' in the mineral kingdom and accordingly belongs to its law of evolution. But this should not be understood that each mineral has only one form of crystallization and those different forms of crystallization represent sort of a ladder. No! The same mineral can also, according to the laws under which the crystallization takes place, develop to various heights, either naturally or artificially.
"I have learned a law, or the chemical proportions, which at the same time reveals the manufacturing and crystallization; but I am sorry to say that I am not permitted to bring it out openly here.
"When I examined the silver and gold chemically (the laboratory in Bit Nur has all the necessary apparatus), I came to the astonishing conclusion that the atomic weight of his silver was not 107.88 but 108, and the one of gold was not 197.2 but registered at 196, which gives rise to the conclusion that both may be considered as 'Mischelemente.' Without doubt, there may be many more of those 'Mischelemente.' Yes, we may not even take a shot in the dark when we say that all existing elements in reality represent isotopes mixed out of the seven substances.
"Herewith, I have to close now. What the important thing was for me to report, I believe to have convincingly discharged. Today, when we look about us, we see that of the occult sciences the long ago buried astrology was the first one to emerge again in its resurrection. Today almost everyone believes in the influences of the stellar bodies in the human life. Magazines, newspapers and astrologers are to be seen and heard of everywhere. One can buy crude horoscopes; and even in establishments one can have his horoscope read. And now, no doubt, alchemy will follow the example of astrology. Obstacles that prevented the reviving of alchemy are gradually being moved aside. In the not too distant future, both scientist and layman will reach again for their goal in the Occident that long ago the initiates of the East have attained; but for the time being it has to remain heavily protected and concealed, namely: 'The Stone of the Wise' or 'The Philosopher's Stone.'
"Here Dr. Musallam concludes his report." When the alchemist began to fold the papers from which he had read the account of Dr. Musallam of Vienna, no one spoke.